Boomkat Product Review:
Gwilly Edmondez is the dad from Yeah You; one of the maddest, most vital duos in underground UK music right now. Slip’s Trouble Number retrospective extends a hard-to-resist invitation to peruse four decades of Gwilly’s work at the outer limits of pop music, pairing the Gnarlage of Self C30 tape with a C60 mixtape …Made Questionably and Unquestioningly by Himself, to present a cherry-picked and unflinching 90 minute portrait of a properly prophetic, pop-wizened soul in his element.
Prone to magpie whatever snags his ear and turn it to his own ends, Gwilly ransacks hip-hop, black metal, folk, power balladry and much more, adapting inventive extended vocal techniques to consolidate a syncretic blatz of bewildering musical logic and unrhymed reasoning. To the casual observer it could appear to be a study in mental health or a Dadaist play, but pay some respect to listen and Gwilly will reward closer attention with flashes of genuine pop genius mixed with baffling non-sequiturs and hallucinatory levels of captivating oddness.
The Gnarlage Of Self tape was made on Newcastle’s hottest day of 2017, in an upstairs room in Heaton, and documents finely graded states of mind between the skittish tangle of 10 Banks of Nein and the reeling soul cadence of Make Your Own World, which could arguably be considered a definitive Edmondez anthem. On the C60 tape Gwilly Edmondez: A Retrospective Mixtape Made Questionably & Unquestioningly by Himself, the handrails are further erased, resulting in a tumbling sequence of slapstick songcraft and spare, improvised electronics mulched into mixtape form. It’s here where the in/sanity and truth really comes out, oozing and ranting in a disarray of bluesy declamations, gender-bent torch songs and psychotomimetic scramble drawn from auld tapes dating to the mid ‘80s, the dankest niches of UBUWEB archives, and up-to-the-minute snatches of recent live shows.
For anyone who is intrigued by or appreciates the work of Richard Youngs, Jandek, Cosmic Dennis Greenidge, Mark Wynn, Sensational or Fenriz, consider this crucial listening.