II is the second intended-to-be album by The Psychic Paramount, weeks of heavy weather arranged into 40 minutes, recklessly focused energy, white-out conditions. After dozens of rips through II I have barely even begun to make out my fingers in front of my face. Squint your eyes and you may glimpse forms in the storm. Open yourself wide and you might discern three silhouettes in the cataclysm, rooted, mindful, working.
Open wide and dive in. I usually just say loud rock. A while back, this kid who looked at least 18 or 20 years old asked me what we sounded like. I described it as kind of like Jimi Hendrix doing guitar feedback for 40 minutes. The genre is so broad. Live at Death By Audio. Photos by Gisel Florez. This appellation works slightly better than most genre names because it is so loose — and there is no single way to describe heavy bands.
The guitar, bass and drums trio uses no singing, and stretches most of its songs past the five-minute mark. Last week at Death By Audio in Brooklyn, The Daily watched the band play to a small, passionate crowd made up mostly of men in their late 30s with beards. In a good way. Not ones to play shows or record often, the band answered a few questions from The Daily.
Drew St. The band lasted only two or three weeks. The decision was made to reignite the band in , and we began rehearsing in New York. We went into the studio shortly after and recorded Gamelan Into the Mink Supernatural.
We decided to start work on a new album in In , we went into a studio and recorded basic tracks for the album, which were ditched. Another two or three years went by in a flash. Finally, we went in to another studio and rerecorded everything in , and finished mixing it in During all that time, we toured sporadically in Europe and the United States. To say we spent an excessive amount of time experimenting and exploring new ideas in our studio is an understatement.
There are heaps of abandoned material. The combination of backlighting, smoke and music is fairly assaultive. How do you navigate the line between music and pure overload?
Drew: We tend to navigate recklessly, and sometimes exciting things happen. People have different thresholds. Jeff: It can be jarring. Our friend Aran Tharp was in charge of the lighting and smoke at Death by Audio. During certain shows, he is shooting film and has a hand-held spotlight. That song is over 20 years old — what does a reference like that mean to you guys? We should have brought firecrackers. Are there other bands you feel a kinship with now?
Drew: Aluk Todolo. Jeff: I always had a great time at Coptic Light shows, but they are defunct now. I thought we fit well together.
In light of that, what do you see as the mission of the band? Instead, Mr. Ivany just repeated an extended-harmony chord for minutes at a time. He strummed fast, his guitar running through a couple of digital filters to make the sound ringing and rubbery.
Or he took his hands off the fretboard and manipulated loops and feedback, making whining and roaring and percussive sounds — amazing sounds really. A version of this review appeared in print on March 7, , on page C5 of the New York edition.
Formed out of the ashes of the under-appreciated until after their demise Laddio Bolocko, The Psychic Paramount take the simple concept of instrumental rock music and set the whole thing ablaze, using their superior musical ability not to dazzle or confuse but to translate the musical experience into a physical one.
I chatted with guitarist Drew St. How did you guys know each other before starting The Psychic Paramount? Laddio split up in and soon afterward I moved to France. In , Ben and I decided to form a new band and booked a tour of France and Italy. Ben suggested getting Tatsuya Nakatani to play drums, basically at the last minute.
Those guys flew out to practice for a few days and do the tour. That formation split up after two and a half weeks. Gamelan summed up the essence of what we were doing at that time. Enough so, we thought, that it seemed redundant to go on pushing those extremes onto new ideas.
I feel like II is definitely a logical continuation from Gamelan … the power and force is still there, but it also seems to stretch out a bit, in certain ways. Has your song-writing process changed at all, or has it always been a certain way? Gamelan was composed entirely on the guitar, which is probably the way most rock songs start out.
A lot of material on II originated from drum beats we would use as a rhythmic foundation to experiment upon and build ideas. Sometimes radically different variations of tracks emerged. The song titles on the new album all seem to be based in practicality, versus any sort of artistic purpose.
Was this an intentional move, or do you just not put a lot of weight into the name of a song? It just worked out that way. Song titles are usually expected but seemed irrelevant for this record.
The abbreviations are convenient, but they also help to reinforce our decidedly non-verbal atmosphere. I can see how a band like The Psychic Paramount has no need for a singer or lyrics or evocative imagery… you guys seem to be about the music and only the music, in a way. Release Date: Tracklist. One review per day please!
And also, break up those fucking paragraphs. Album Rating: 4. I'll give you a break from my "stream of consciousness" for a week or so. No need to be rude though. People doesn't seem to be very welcoming around here. But thanks anyhow. That's just how it is sometimes. I apologize if I sounded rude but it kinda annoys me when something like that happens.
And you're quite right on the length of them paragraphs. Yeah, also don't use parenthesis that much and I would refrain from quoting other critics or people pertaining to unless you feels it's absolutely necessary. That's better! Now if I may add one more thing, try and refrain from using the first person perspective as well. It makes you seem biased.May 11, · LOUD NOISES. II is incomprehensibly loud; I can't even begin to imagine what listening to this at full volume must be like, because even with my iPod set at just over half-volume it's drowning out passing trucks completely. It's an album that works entirely on sensory overload; the rhythms are tight and taut, sure, but the idea that you could dance to this is a little bit laughable; similarly /5(29).