30 May 2014

Fucking Punctuation, Unconventional Seagulls

Nog Records is a particularly awesome DIY noise label out of Allentown PA with a staggering amount of releases; Unconventional Seagulls is personally one of my favorites. Released January 2014 on CDr, this is a rather unique collaboration between Pory Nog of Seagulls Fucking Seagulls and Dan Wasko of Unconventional Punctuation. Each track the two switch off between using a bass and contact mic, and operating a pedalboard. The result is just under an hour of unapologetically harsh noise with absurd and irreverent titles.

While exceedingly abrasive when taken at face value, this album actually contains some lovely flourishes of a-melodic frequencies and a meticulous patchwork of tones. Thick walls of noise open up as a varying assemblage of textures subtly intensify and recede at a meditative pace. From long sweeps of hurricane like flange distortion to jittery clicks and squeaks resembling a cluster of moist insects milling about some kind of electronic cesspool. Emerging from all this comes the occasional swell of deceptively harmonious tones that only stay briefly enough to make you question if you actually heard them. Anyone who has ever done noisy stuff with the Boss pitch shifter will also immediately recognize the haunting alien cries it makes as it tires to make sense of the atonal mess you feed into it.

Each time I listen to this album I find something that I had not noticed previously, and it’s abrupt ending leaves me eagerly awaiting more. Get a hand painted pink copy of this from Nog Records. When I first received this I was (and still am) unsure if I could safely put it into my laptop without pink shrapnel chewing away the optical drive, but all of Nog’s releases are also available as free downloads. Check them out, if you like what you hear spend a couple bucks to get a physical copy.