Option Review: Headlock

This is one of those rare records where the artist takes the best qualities of other artists I admire, adds his own individuality, and seems to move everything up a notch. In varying proportions Dimuzio captures the excitement, careening adventurousness, and occasional harshness of Due Process; the shimmering sedation of Organum; and the primal, magical environments of Cranioclast. In a couple of places I thought of King Crimson making a discontinuous jump into noise experimentation. Rather than theme-development-melody, etc., Dimuzio works with moods, qualities, and ideas in evolution. While some of the sounds are recognizable, they seem embedded in contexts that make them new or unusual - check out the slightly revving engine. Side one has most of the storms of swirling, peaking distortion, but it doesn't seem irritating, blended as it is with so many other soothing sounds. Acoustic guitar, vocals, and other sounds from many sources are often in the mix. "Sallow" is a beautiful experience, while many others are thrilling. Although a one-man effort using tons of samples and computer-MIDI stuff, the record has a very live feel. Recommended. —Tom Grove