Noise Rock

VIDEO PREMIERE

Being Dead - Apostles' Prom

By Gerard Marcus

Being Dead, multi-instrumentalists Juli Keller’s and Cody Dosier’s band, makes lo-fi experimental rock that creeps between brash and melodic realms. The new video for their single “Apostles’ Prom,” skillfully directed by Shannon Wiedemeyer and Carlo Nasisse, depicts the surreal collision of good and evil. Two groups, lead by the Guru and the Devil, come to a head in an open field, looking to settle once and for all the power struggle between light and dark. But right before before things turn to bloodshed, they realize they have a specific shared passion, a revelation that allows all sides to embrace their differences and unite in mutual appreciation. In both the track and video, Being Dead is able to toe the line between dark commentary and playful imagery, showing that if we take the time to look past our differences–even in the most drastic cases–there might be something there to bring us together.

PRODUCTION CREDITS:

Hunky Directors - Shannon Wiedemeyer and Carlo Nasisse

Hunky Director of Photography - Carlo Nasisse

Devil Worshipping Producer - Jordan Willis 

Editor and Colorist - Alex Winker

Hunky Key Grip - Garson Ormiston

Neutral 1st AC - Ali Goodwin

Hunky Gaffer - Trevor Hoover

Neutral (But probably a Devil Worshipping) Makeup Artist - Ubaldo Rodriguez

Hunky Wardrobe/ Costume Designer - Adrienne Greenblatt

Devil Worshipping PA’s - Joshua Baker, Taylor Browne

STARRING:

The Devil - Juli Keller

The Guru - Cody Dosier

Cherub - Tim O’Brien

Devil Worshippers / Not Hunks - Itamar Benitez, Mireille Blond, Ethan Boley, Joe Boley, Erin O’Brien, Taylor Browne, Niamh Fleming, Hailey Jamieson, Belicia Luevano, Maya Van Os, Cheyenne Petrich, Thea Robinson, Jordan Willis 

Guru Worshippers / Hunks - Nacho The Dog, Adrienne Greenblatt, Trevor Hoover, Ronnie Lokos, Julian McCamman-McGinnis, Carlo Nassise, Cristina Ocampo, Angel Reyes, Katie Okhuysen, Garson Ormiston

Special Thanks - The Boleys, Horse People of America

VIDEO PREMIERE: Wsabi Fox - Yes Ma'am

Will Shenton

Deep in the sludgy, kaleidoscopic hallucination that is Wsabi Fox's newest video, "Yes Ma'am," we see and hear flashes of somewhat unexpected instruments: a violin, a cello, a saxophone. Though they're mainly used as accents, this eclectic ensemble hints at the wildly creative energy of the artist. Not content to make a straightforward tune, "Yes Ma'am" boils over with ideas through a haze of controlled mania.

The video is composed of a series of half-remembered vignettes—Wsabi Fox dancing or clawing at her painted face, musicians plugging away dutifully at the off-kilter time signature—all layered with colored lights and an ephemeral filter that give them dreamlike qualities. But more than a dream, "Yes Ma'am" feels like hypnosis. Its nearly seven-minute runtime and relentlessly propulsive guitars draw you in, bombarding your senses and drowning out anything beyond the borders of the screen.

"Yes Ma'am" is simultaneously a delightful nightmare and a headbanging assertion of power ("I'm the motherfucking boss," Wsabi Fox declares). It'll worm its way into your head and refuse to let go.

Catch Wsabi Fox's GUSHING EP release show July 18 at C'mon Everybody (Brooklyn) with Charmaine Lee, Mary Knapp, & CP Unit

REVIEW: Lingua Nada - Snuff

Raquel Dalarossa

Lingua Nada are a hard band to pin down. They’ve been described as everything and anything, from progressive pop to math rock, and their own Bandcamp page’s tags run the gamut from shoegaze to emo. It has to be impossible for a band to truly embody all these genres, right?

That’s one assumption that quickly goes out the window after a listen to the band’s full-length debut, Snuff. Indeed, despite the inclusion of just ten tracks, the material here covers a hell of a lot of ground. It’s an astonishingly well-integrated mishmash of sound, practically bursting at the seams with a live wire energy that drives the band’s ecstatic experimentation.

Though it’s formally considered their debut, it’s easy to tell that Snuff is no amateur release. For the four-piece—led by Adam Lenox Jr. on vocals and guitar (as well as on recording and production duties), with Michael Geyer on second guitar, Arvid Sobek on bass, and Valentin Tornow on percussion and trumpet—this has been a long time coming. Based in Leipzig, Germany, Lingua Nada has gained some traction in the European indie world, having spent the past two years touring rather relentlessly to support a couple of EP releases. Even as far back as 2014 the band were already recording together under the name “Goodbye Ally Airships,” though their only LP with that moniker exhibits more straight up emo and post-hardcore tendencies. It’s clear they’ve done a fair amount of maturing their sound since then.

Snuff deftly incorporates the band’s obvious love for hard-driving punk and noise-rock with lighter moments of shoegaze and pop-rock. Opening track “Svrf Party” pretty much gives you a taste of all of these pieces upfront, nearly causing auditory whiplash right out of the gate. With a penchant for near-operatic drama and frenzied, guitar-driven tempos recalling thrash metal, it can take a lot of energy just to listen to this stuff, but it’s always rewarding.

“A Netflix Original,” for example, starts off with a barrage on all your senses, but quickly evolves into math rock-leaning arpeggios, with string instruments and synths adorning a buildup to a joyous post-punk jam. Other highlights include “Cyanide Soda,” an almost danceable track with some of the catchiest riffs on the album, as well as “Shapeshifted,” at once moody, brooding, and soaring.

Lingua Nada's Snuff is a wild ride without a doubt, but it's one you won't regret taking. Just be sure to buckle up. 

PREMIERE: The Channels - See No Reason

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Phillipe Roberts

Deeply apocalyptic and hauntingly personal, the no-wave clatter of The Channels will give you the creeps for days on end in the best of ways. Led by guitarist-vocalist Wes Kaplan—whose solo project, The Craters, also released a phenomenal record last year—the band creates roaring rhythmic conversations, locking into hellish, nerve-wracking grooves that call to mind noise pioneers Arab on Radar and DNA and grinding them to pieces with caustic precision. The sounds are metallic and abrasive, courtesy of prepared guitar techniques paired with a minimal use of effects that envelop them in a sleek alien sheen. Even for the initiated, alien is probably the best description of The Channels. On their upcoming album through Drop Medium, Double Negative, an extraterrestrial heart attack with eerie hooks in all the wrong places, their formidable howling is magnified to hypnotic new heights.

Our first taste of Double Negative comes wrapped up in the controlled chaos of “See No Reason,” one of the more straightforward numbers that can’t help but come off as lightly anthemic despite The Channels’ fascination with the grotesque. Kaplan’s distorted guitar sirens square off against the powerful rhythm section of drummer Nick Baker and bassist Ian Kovaks (formerly of Guerilla Toss), weaving a flurry of delayed notes in between their unexpectedly funky backbeat. “Everyone knows it’s a fucked up town,” he chants in the breakdown, yawning with detached slacker coolness, perking up into echoes of “I see no reason / To stick around,” as the track tears off into oblivion. Like sleepwalking through a nightmare, Double Negative dances on the edge of fear with supernatural grace.

Pre-order Double Negative here, out April 13.

REVIEW: Profligate - Somewhere Else

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Phillipe Roberts

Noah Anthony’s music as Profligate exists in a realm that’s equal parts anxiety and serenity. His voice, dark but warm, drifts with an eerie, dispassionate calm through chaotically buzzing fields of power electronics that constantly threaten to overpower him. Deep listening is a must; for all the firepower he throws into his productions, blasting off with shrieks of noise or milking a disorienting snare for every nauseating hit, the mild-mannered coolness of his delivery forces you to pay attention, continuously adjusting your auditory focus to take in the nuances of his performance. Teetering frantically between total collapse and flow-state ecstasy, Somewhere Else, his latest work, is also his most rewarding and wide-ranging. For the nocturnal headphone-dweller, it’s a scenic mind map well worth poring over. For the industrial club-seeker, Anthony brings a devious set of grooves diverse enough to keep you coming back for more.

Somewhere Else comes into view slowly. The opener (also the title track) sweeps in on steady bass bumps as a grinding synthetic pulse creeps alongside. Other elements unfold dramatically: snatches of guitar, lagging keys, and pixelated electronic distortions flutter in and out at their leisure, giving the impression of a machine chugging across a foreboding landscape. Constantly approaching or departing from these textural landmarks, the words sung by Anthony can only be picked apart with great care. The intent and effect is to pull you deeper into the mix—baiting with familiar tones to assure you that, yes, a flesh-and-blood human is at the controls, programming this strange journey. By the time the song collapses to the finish line at the eight-minute mark, opening up into more spacious territory with a gorgeous acoustic bass and noise duet, there’s a sense of acclimation to the oceanic pressures at which Anthony works.

With the cinematic exposition out of the way, the album leans into the left turns, exploring more hook-centric territory with an industrial flair without turning his mind-altering synth explorations into window dressing. “Jet Black (King of the World)” alternates between blasts of noise and a deep echo dub riff, turning the title phrase into a call and response that becomes the record’s poppiest moment. Expanded electronics aren’t treated in a purely dichotomous way throughout; noise isn’t merely the “shadow” to the lighter hooks. “Enlist” winds glitchy manipulations around a slinky bass riff, creating a series of secondary riffs running alongside the more obvious ones. Channeling the darkest corners of synth pop, particularly Depeche Mode, yields tremendously enjoyable results, and gives Somewhere Else other attractions beyond its mysterious grit.

While this is the first album to fully showcase Anthony’s collaborations with poet Elaine Kahn, she mostly sticks to the background here, harmonizing gently. “Lose a Little,” a skittering drum number that percolates out into nothingness towards the end, constitutes her biggest feature. The brooding instrumentals, hissing with crackling radio static, play well under her voice. “Fucking nature / You delight in getting rid of me,” Kahn spits just before it comes to a halt. Her venomous monologue heightens the tension just as the album begins to take on too much familiarity. The presence of a secondary voice energizes the experience, and more of her features would be a welcome surprise.

Much like its cover, Somewhere Else takes pleasure in small contortions. Anthony introduces touches of chaos to throw you off balance, but never enough to render reality unrecognizable from the hazy dream states into which he seeks to lure you. Approach with caution: its constant dissections won’t quite peel you apart, but may throw your ears into an unorthodox tuning for quite some time afterwards.