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Minibeast, 'On Ice'

More than 40 years ago, multi-instrumentalist Peter Prescott and the rest of the Boston-formed group Mission of Burma became de facto cartographers of a map inked with post-punk, art rock, textural guitar-and-beats interplay and oblique, albeit emotional, lyricism. Through Prescott's subsequent bands Volcano Suns and Kustomized, he continued to expand his territory. His current ensemble, Minibeast, is the wooly, untrackable cryptid wandering out of his storied career.

The title track from the band's latest, "On Ice" is an impressive volley of syncopated rhythm-section wallop, slices of processed guitar and keyboard stabs and spoken-word-leaning vocal delivery. Comprising Prescott on guitars, keyboards and vocals, bassist Niels LaWhite, drummer Keith Seidel and guesting multi-instrumentalist Pete Weiss, "On Ice" is an unpredictable sonic swirl that evokes peak-level krautrock like Amon Düül II more than any algorithmic post-rock. Out of the gate, it's apparent that Minibeast isn't afraid to flex its technical proficiency, a refreshing move in an underground scene that can be guilty of confusing coy ineptitude with egalitarian inclusion. "On Ice," and Minibeast in total, are a logical outgrowth of Prescott's pedigree and his ongoing attempts at luring cogent weirdness out of the art wilderness.

Copyright 2022 WJCT News 89.9

Daniel A. Brown