Friday, February 3, 2012
We Need Secrets on Noyes Records
Chad over at Noyes Records has been keeping me up to date with their ongoing 7" releases that are part of their subscription club. Turns out this month's single from We Need Secrets is his own solo project (plus he's been playing with the Kestrels which is also news to me), named after the Pavement lyric from the Gold Soundz single! So Chad has been coming home after a hard day at the Noyes pressing plant and going down the basement to his guitar pedal science lab to craft these multilayered, dense pop sound blinds.
I don't think Chad is kidding when he makes a few things clear in the press one sheet: this is not a garage record, it's not about the beach and he did his very best to record at the best possible fidelity which he's calling mid-fi.
I can agree with that fidelity characterization...what I am hearing on A-Side's, "Purple", though is a massive, textured layering of guitars, the kind of million track monster wave (oops, beach reference) that builds up slowly way off shore (dammit) and builds into this epic god damn tsunami (they're never sending me another record). It would simply be enough that he's able to weave together a tangle of distortions into this new monster, but then to put it together into harmonic stacks that actually make sense...
From the first panned across high screech of distortion it's going to owe a lot to My Bloody Valentine, of course...but I get the attraction to these sounds, when making these collages, the ways the tones collide, and combine is the fun, unknown variable as a musician. How the few distortions combined together are so far away from the original sounds, when you start chaining pedals together, there's no telling what effect you even consciously have on that tone anymore, that's great stuff...and there's plenty of this happening before the drums even kick in. This drawn out melody is slowly repeated, getting thicker and longer with each successive pass. It's really reaching for that overwhelming moment while staying true to the melody, it's a sort of Explosions kind of epic travel track, this one would keep you awake on that long stretch between towns in the middle of the desert.
B-Side's, "Slow Summer" has none of this build up, you run straight into a warbling wall, a shifting, slowly rocking about to topple over, Swirlies wall. I swear I'm checking the belt on the turntable now...there's that bent whammy bar sound perpetually throughout every chord and the vocals are also coming in a lot heavier on this side, but it's the layers, not harmony...that just cancel each other out in a chorus of shoegaze.
I love the amount of treble that comes from overdubbing and overdubbing a reel to reel, everything eq'd towards the high end. By then end of this track it even gets extra crazy, cross panning between speakers. You're still getting that Broken Water massive bass that comes when these layers all get into phase for a chorus, when all of a sudden that low change is exaggerated and you're back into surprising yourself with how freaking cool it sounds...maybe because in a way it's so unnatural. When everything finally stops and you hear these raw pedal sounds hissing, phasing away at the sound of nothing, you're hearing that chain of god damn effects it took to get there, it's a carefully orchestrated science experiment of which only Chad knows the formula...
Get this one from Noyes Records
I love the design of these singles, they've kept this op art aesthetic going, a kind of '50s classic look. There's some secret messages in the gutter of this one and they pressed 100 light blue, 200 on black. Massive short story printed on the inner sleeve...which has a lot to do with the summer...NOT THE BEACH!
Coming to NYC live sometime in April.