Lemuria/Kind of Like Spitting – Your Living Room’s All Over Me
Art of the Underground, 2006
Acquired: Mississippi Records, Used, 2013
Everything happens for a reason. Or something like that. While I’m no diehard fatalist, I am often infinitely creep out by the way the universe thrusts things into my hands. Though the time I spent at Portland’s tiny yet absolutely brilliant Mississippi Records was brief, I managed to find about five awesome records. This Lemuria/Kind of Like Spitting split is something I’ve been trying to track down since I first got into Kind of Like Spitting about five years ago. I couldn’t find a download of it anywhere. I recently recommitted myself to Kind of Like Spitting and Lemuria’s latest LP The Distance is so Big totally blew me away. So finally acquiring this split fees a bit uncanny.
It’s odd hearing Lemuria’s early stuff. If I hadn’t heard The Distance is so Big, I’d still get down on these six tracks, but I’ve got a different appreciation at work given that I know how this band is going to morph into one of the most compelling indie rock bands of the present. There’s a lot more pop punk elements (mostly heaps of power chords), and Sheena Ozzella’s vocals are extremely raw and borderline chirpy, but the off kilter song structures are present in an amoebic state and it is apparent that the germ of this band, the little core of their being, has always been a wonderful listen. Though Lemuria’s lyrics often have a heaviness about them, it’s so obvious that this band is having a whole hell of a lot of fun making something old new again.
Though this split features the dawn of Lemuria, it consequently features the twilight of Kind of Like Spitting. Not to say that Ben Barnett’s songs here are bad, more like I’m just bummed he basically quit making music after 2006’s The Thrill of the Hunt. The songs here are of the refined, emo-leaning variety that populated the late Kind of Like Spitting albums and removed from the quieter, more lo-fi bent of his earlier stuff. “Why I Smoke Mad Weed” and “Afraid of Crushes” are standout representations of Barnett’s latter day work which incorporated his distinct guitar work and pained vocals with affecting tales of misery. Kind of Like Spitting make the most of their five songs on this split and it’s a nice surprise from a band that never really made a cohesive album. I love that I thought “You I Seek” sounded a whole hell of a lot like the Thermals only to check the liner notes and IT IS BASICALLY A FUCKING THERMALS SONG! Awesome. So awesome.
Lemuria - "Hours"
Kind of Like Spitting - "Why I Smoke Mad Weed"