Windy & Carl: Dedications to Flea

No, Windy Weber and Carl Hultgren don't share a perverse affection for a certain bass funkateer who occasionally performs wearing nothing but a sock on his Johnson. They do, however, clearly miss their deceased dog Flea (1990-2005) and have devised a rather imaginative way to memorialize him. The album is not only the first new release from Windy & Carl since 2001's Consciousness (kranky) but also the first outing in Brainwashed's Handmade Series, designed to package artists' radio sessions, live performances, and mini-albums in special letterpress sleeves prepared by Michael Babcock. Featuring two tracks of about nineteen minutes each in duration, Dedications to Flea falls into the mini-album category. Constructed from multi-layered filigrees of delicate guitar strums, “Ode to a Dog” exudes a peaceful, heavenly ambiance that's rather affecting, given the presumed intensity of feeling the two have for their departed companion. Though neither a drone nor ambient piece, the track suggests both as it softly unfurls like clouds slowly drifting across the sky. Given that taped sounds by Flea were incorporated into the album's pieces, one wonders if the faint rustling noises rippling through the background might be him. No such uncertainty applies to the darker and more drone-like “Sketch for Flea” where the dog's heavy panting, barking, and scuffling noises stand out against the stormy guitar blur.

July 2005