Backed by a drum machine, they issued a six-song EP, Rode Hard & Put Up Wet, on the Homestead label in 1988. They subsequently played some tour dates with My Dad Is Dead, whose drummer at the time was Oberlin College percussion major John McEntire. McEntire wound up joining Bastro full-time for their LP debut, 1989's Bastro Diablo Guapo, which drew comparisons to the blistering extremity of Steve Albini and the precision and shifting dynamics of another Squirrel Bait offshoot, Slint. Their second full-length, 1990's Sing the Troubled Beast, found the group straining against their established blueprint to follow a relatively subtle and melodic path.
Bassist Johnson subsequently left the group and was replaced by Bundy K. Brown; meanwhile, Grubbs relocated to Chicago to attend graduate school. Feeling limited by the extremity of their power-trio format and afraid of stagnating, Bastro tried to push into more atmospheric territory, and wound up deciding to retire the name altogether and continue as a completely different project, dubbed Gastr del Sol. Brown and McEntire appeared on Gastr del Sol's 1993 debut, The Serpentine Similar, after which the group became a vehicle for Grubbs' collaboration with Jim O'Rourke, as well as a touchstone of the post-rock movement.
Brown and McEntire subsequently became charter members of the even more seminal post-rock outfit Tortoise. ~ Steve Huey, All Music Guide Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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