The oddly named Antlered Aunt Lord is as shambolic and weird as their name might imply. Led by the one and only member, Jesse Stinnard, AAL is a crazy chaotic mess of a solo project. Stinnard is a hap hazard artist who cranks out songs as if doing so was as involuntary as breathing. I’m not sure if he’s really all that good overall but he occasionally hits a sweet spot and comes up with something that perks your ears up.
Stinnard’s solo effort, Ostensibly Formerly Stunted, is as loosely put together as his musical ideas. Consisting of 19 tracks much of this record comes from a backlog of songs AAL had laying around and it kind of sounds like it. Ostensibly Formerly Stunted runs together as if it were his stream of consciousness let loose in a recording studio. As a result the album is truly all over the place musically and covers more genres of indie than I could count. Guitars are wrangled, drums broken, voices strained and through it all Ostensibly Formerly Stunted is as lo-fi as lo-fi can be. I’m not sure if my tolerance level for all this messiness is high enough for repeated listens, but there are some special moments on this slab. For example, the second Stinnard finds a keyboard magical things happen songs worth hearing ooze out of the record.Ostensibly Formerly Stunted isn’t necessarily a bad record from a songwriting standpoint (Stinnard has some great ideas) it just pivots from production qualities faster than sub genres. And while the production is lacking AAL has some tunes worthy of listening to and given $10 and a DAT recorder they might make for a nice sounding record. Unfortunately, this entire record is so all over the place that it tested my sanity a bit too much. If you like crazy lo-fi/no-fi pop off of Adderall you’ll absolutely flip a wig for this but if you enjoy hearing things in a somewhat structured manner…you’ll lose your mind. Antlered Aunt Lord’s Ostensibly Formerly Stunted sounds like a demo committed to vinyl and I’m not sure that’s a good thing.