ALBUM REVIEW: “Parallax Error Beheads You” by Max Tundra
Parallax Error Beheads You
It might be easy to describe what kind of music Max Tundra (true identity: Ben Jacobs) makes on his third album, Parallax Error Beheads You, but any short descriptor would come far from doing him justice. With the focus of a perfectionist, and yet with the attention span of an ADD-addled teen, his intricate, spazztastic electronic tunes consist of a staggering number of bits and pieces that have been delicately constructed into pop songs. The effect can be similar to the sonic hurling of a track being played backward, or the frantic spinning of a radio dial. The amazing part about it all, though, is that Jacobs has a wonderful ear for melody, and the songs so intricately pieced together from endless fragments become awesome dance numbers.
The catchiest track, “Which Song,” could be an 80’s top 40 hit if it were created using more traditional song-making techniques. Jacobs employs both actual and electronic instruments, and controls them all from the vantage point of a Commodore Amiga 500, rendering him part nerd, part genius. As the least caffeinated element on the album, his vocals ground the music in reality as an alternating falsetto and sly whisper explore relationship difficulties and awkward social situations. Eleven minute final track “Until We Die” sounds like the ER themesong with an Entertainment Tonight punch and hundreds of thoughts crammed in that somehow give way to a dreamy refrain and epic rock. Max Tundra writes hyper videogame dance music for people who want to bounce ecstatically and think at the same time.