The duo of KatieJane Garside (Daisy Chainsaw, QueenAdreena, etc.) and Chris Whittingham, known collectively as Liar, Flower are announcing the release of a new album, Geiger Counter, on One Little Indian Records.
Stylistically varied, the album ranges from raw, bewildering, venomous rock to gentle folk musings. The album will be available via download and streaming services initially, then as 2 LP’s or CD deluxe package (already available for pre-order), as well as a standard CD version. Liar, Flower is a new, louder and more aggressive reiteration of Ruby Throat, consisting of aGarside on vocals and multi instrumentalist Whittingham. As Ruby Throat, the duo released four albums and an EP between 2007 and 2017, as well as their 2018 compilations, Stone Dress, and Liar, Flower.
It began with Daisy Chainsaw in 1991 when KatieJane Garside emerged as a furious icon of the alt-girl underworld in a torn dress and matted hair howling “Love Your Money”, a confused and violent mixture of lust and loathing; then came QueenAdreena – bolder, darker, louder, unpredictable and violent.
Garside and Whittingham have been living together on a small sailboat, while raising their young daughter and have spent the past few years out at sea. In recent years, the pair have lived a life of isolation, and the album reflects those experiences, coincidentally fitting for the current times.
Of the songs that make up Geiger Counter, “I Am Sundress (She Of Infinite Flowers” is a delicate piece of Garside’s sweet, innocent-sounding vocals and autoharp accompaniment; “My Brain Is Lit Like An Airport” is the opposite – crunchy guitars, screamed vocals and intensity ramped up to 100, although it walks a fine balance by the fluctuation of narrative vocals and shouting; “Doors Locked, Oven’s Off” is an acoustic-based instrumental, permeated by slide guitar runs and “Little Brown Shoe” is an interesting combination of a groove-driven track, propelled forward by angular guitar riffs and alternating singing and shouts – the staple of Ms. Garside’s style. “Blood Berries” is a subdued moment – ponderous, chilling and tense, yet without histrionics and “Mud Stars” is a cacophonous cycle of – again – heavier guitars and narrated vocals.
This collection of songs isn’t something I would usually listen to, if truth be told, but it’s interesting. It sounds very good, production-wise, as it’s crisp and taut, but I’m unaccustomed to experimental music at this stage, so it will take a few more listens for me to decide where it fits in my musical headspace. But getting out of one’s comfort zone is always a worthwhile trip.
Geiger Counter is currently available for download and will be released on CD and LP on Friday, August 21st, 2020.