Interesting album here, as the band sound like they’re unpacking their instruments as they’re playing it, some of it sounds off-key but they’re playing it out in the hopes of being in-tune. But they never quite get there, and there creates the mission. The Hand To Man Band play music that goes all over the place, but do it in a way that is interesting. You Are Always On Our Minds (Post-Consumer) sounds like Side 4 of Pink Floyd’s Ummagumma if they were raised on Sun Ra. It seems they take on the theory at there are no wrong keys, for if the ear hears something that’s off, they will eventually get to a note that you can comprehend. Within the band’s stormy wars is a sense of musicianship that could be interpreted as anything from avant-garde rock to twisted funk, and there’s good reason for that.
The group is a supergroup featuring Mike Watt, Thollem, John Dieterich, and Tim Barners, so if you’re familiar with Deerhoof, Silver Jews, Jim O’Rourke, The Minutemen, and fIREHOSE, this is a continuation of what they are as musicians. Will you hear shades of these bands? Let me say this: don’t expect familiarity. Okay, you might hear Watts’ bass intro to “They Pretty Right” and go “YES, THIS SOUNDS LIKE” this and that and whatever, but knowing who is in the band, you go into it for the adventure of their ride, not to relive past glories. The glory in The Hand To Man Band is being together to create new music, and yes, it’s full of twists that is just exciting as what you know them for. Now know “them”.
(MP3 and CD versions can be purchased below via Amazon.com. If you’d like to purchase it on vinyl, order directly from Post-Consumer Records.)