Artists: Kieronononon & Sky Eats Airplane Albums: BrutalTechnoPunk E.P & self-titled Labels: roxXOR2 & Equal Vision Links: http://www.myspace.com/kieronononon & http://www.skyeatsairplane.com What do you feel like listening to right now? Come on, make your choice. Forget what's in your CD rack, there's four-story music shops in town and, hell, an entire internet right in front of you. You can choose anything. You have the entire history of music at your fingertips. Musicians have the same access and the same choices. They have heard everything, they have learnt the history of their art, and they must progress knowing that their audience has the same knowledge. The listener must be given something new, and the musician must find a way to deliver it, but how can they when every sound has been used, every instrument has been fully explored and every tune seems familiar? Music that's genuinely new seems impossible, so instead musicians pick and choose from the last century, as their audience does, picking influences and choosing genres, mixing them with freedom, and sometimes, skill, attempting to create music that feels fresh. Texan metallers Sky Eats Airplane and English punk trio Kieronononon make similar choices about where they plunder their music from, and yet end up with quite different results. 'No-One Laughed,' by Kieronononon, opens with doom riffage before neatly shifting into frantic bouts of drilling guitars and punky ranting, the 'singer' muttering a pub anecdote about a girl with really big feet, while the elastic bass and electronics add groove and swagger. 'Fishes Lay' has a guitar solo so lo-fi and distorted it feels like it's clawing at your ear drums, but 'Temporal Conflict' lumbers along with spaced out vocals drifting across a bendy, shady backdrop. The whole EP sounds spiky and rough, like it was recorded in a badly insulated garage, but the band drag hugely disparate influences and a lot of musicianship into this filthy, fuzzy place. The last track almost sounds like the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, before going into a fidgety guitar section and more ranted lyrics. Those lyrics, too, seem daft, but are very funny, and they're not stupid, they even attempt insight in several places with surprising success. Daftness, humour and surprise are three things, however, you are unlikely to encounter on Sky Eats Airplane's self-titled second album. Like Kieronononon, they spray genres liberally about the place; sections of extreme metal thunder and sub-human growl, compete with twiddly, hair-metal guitar licks, soaring 'emo' vocals, and attempts at calm, poignant, atmospheric electronica. 'Numbers' is typical, beginning with heavy, technical metal, moving into a mathy section with that oh so emotional singing, and then chucking a quiet, self-consciously important bridge and a romping stadium bouncing bit to finish it off. I should appreciate music so schizophrenic, and they certainly know their genres, but it's all done with such bland functionality that they remove any possible enjoyment. The production, for starters, is glassy and squeaky clean, removing all of the blood and sweat from the more outright metal bits. The 'emo' singer, even without hating on him as much as I'd like, takes himself and his 6th form poetry way too seriously. And there's nothing wrong with using lots of genres, but they throw so much at each song that I can barely tell one from the next, an impression not helped by the fact they all have the same tune. Or maybe they don't have any tune, I can't really tell. Thankfully, at least Sky Eats Airplane appear to recognise their own folly towards the end. 'Disconnected,' and 'Machines,' stuffy titles aside, make a virtue of their tunelessness, and push the electronica and growled metal to the front, dispensing entirely with the affected emotional warbling to create a less hyper version of the Mad Capsule Markets. If only they'd have realised sooner. Luckily I have Kieronononon's infectious, messy and endearing E.P as an antidote. At least they remembered that music's supposed to be fun.