THE ALLEGATIONS - Non-Neutered 1%

The Allegations - Non-Neutered 1%

11 songs
52:52 minutes
***** ***


Sometimes there is a very narrow line between genius and insanity. Sometimes they may even overlap. Take the case of The Allegations, a New York City based duet that has, with the help of a couple of guest musicians, recently released its debut album Non-Neutered 1%. Where most bands play some kind of genre, be it pop, rock, metal, punk or whatever, The Allegations have chosen to play all the genres at once.

The nearly hour long album contains eleven tracks, and apart from the opener and the final two songs, they each consist of two shorter songs, so that we get nineteen songs that take the listener on a truly weird rollercoaster journey.

The opener Dick Street is beat influenced funky rock song, one of the most normal moments on the album. The band continues with Obviously, We Rock, another jumpy rock track performed at quite an elevated pace, followed by Live @ Utility Hall, a four minute mock live introduction of the band, followed by the band seemingly leaving the stage. Eleven Dresses On A Sun-E Day sounds like Harry Belafonte jamming with Ween. This is an outstanding piece of genius! I Raised A Young (Black) Boy is an excursion into surreal avant pop music with a strange chorus. Doormat Daddy has quite the swampy blues sound, before the following track, also titled Doormat Daddy, puts some coals into the fire, sounding like Guided By Voices.

And so it continues, with all kinds of weird, short vignettes. Only the final two tracks take more time to unfold, at six minutes each. Hung Toddler is a wonderful indie country ballad with a nice banjo part and a great slide guitar, once again reminding me of Ween. The concluding Various Artists is all things at once, starting as a hip hop song, then merging into gothic rock, before becoming a ballad, morphing into a high speed wacky/quirky pop song, and eventually ending with an arena rock part where the message is that although we are not all on the same page, we all share the same stage.

The Allegations are a band that invites itself to be compared to all kinds of experimental musicians, from Captain Beefheart over the Tubes and Devo to the Residents. There are moments of truest inspiration, but at times the joke goes on for too long, like on the four-minute band introduction. The band switches between regular instruments and unusual keyboard sounds, and the production is very lo-fi throughout the album. I have to admit that it took me some time to warm up to the music, but once I felt myself anchored to the duoís universe, it was fun to see what they mean to do. Itís in some ways comedy rock, but itís also meant to broaden your horizon. Itís definitely no mainstream music, and you need a certain affinity for outsider music to enjoy Non-Neutered 1% to the max. But once youíre there, you will be mesmerised by the strange and unusual charm of this undefinable music.

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