The AMG All Music Guide - Fallout 2

The second in the series of live recordings from the collective, Fallout 2 follows in its predecessor's footsteps by presenting four untitled live tracks (though details of where each track comes from are provided, namely from four separate shows in 2000 and 2001). Edited together to form one flowing full-CD piece, it's not the easiest of albums to explicitly concentrate on listening to -- the trio creates the music in its own good time and fashion -- but does reward closer attention. Exploring both calmer and more jittery impulses, the three go where they collectively wish to, the improvisatory nature of the shows more often than not turning up with some gems. The contrast between lush though buried synth tones and guitar textures with a squirrelly, twisting, and tweaked vocal sample (or so it sounds like) on "One" makes for good listening, as does the sudden inclusion of live drumming about 11 minutes in combined with more overt guitar playing. "Two," the shortest of the cuts (admittedly at 12 minutes total still fairly long) comes across as the most amorphous of the selections, dominated by Bearpark's often haunting guitar parts descending into a glitch-tinged sequence of semi-wind tunnel noise, his playing quiet calls in the subtle chaos. "Three" brings clearer though usually non-English-language vocal samples to the fore, heavily distorted at many points while a watery, calm background floats deep in the mix, before slowly but surely shifting into a glaze of static leading into the final track. "Four" wraps things up with everything from documentary bits on cathedrals to heavy, slow, and stoned beats, a tripped-out flow of sound. Various Bearpark notes and noises spike through the Os/Bowness web of music, sometimes in the subtlest of ways.

Ned Raggett