Pterodactyls, as you know by now, were amazing flying dinosaurs. Pterodactyl, on the other hand, is a band from Brooklyn that recently put out an annoying album called Spills Out. Every time I've listened to this album, I've been eager for it to end and relieved when it did. The problem is that Spills Out somehow manages to be both unrelenting and aimless. It's a confusion of Dismemberment Plan drumming, Sonic Youth guitar wailing, Animal Collective noise blur and Zombies harmonizing. I admire the effort to meld all of these disparate sources into a new sound. Pterodactyl, though, can't ever get it all to cohere. I'm all for noise and chaos, but only if it's willing to pummel me or it's capable of disorienting me. Spills Out is too distracted to do either. According to Jagjaguwar's website, "The record bulges with the scorched hum of the Kawasaki Dual Cool Keys, a discontinued toy keyboard from the early '00s that the band loves for its bizarre soundbank and unique ability to fold in half for duet play." I like when things bulge and get scorched. I just don't think a toy keyboard is the best tool for the job.
Pterodactyl plays Sean Kelly's Sunday, Dec. 4, at 9 PM. Free.