Words: Chris Bynes
A week or so ago, I was talking to Ilya about what music meant to me. I had the realization that music is only separated into genres as a way to both sell and categorize their expressions. But music itself can only really be music (at least, to me) when the music lives. Rather it’s music when the music feels a lot like a piece of our lives, from the moment that you first fell in love to the moment of clrity about your personality to even that moment where you lost your mind. This is why I count Noise as not only music but an artform that transcends even the most narrow idea of music. Because noise, depending on how you use it and what instrument, represents so much: anxiety, stress, apathy, depression, fun, intensity, insanity, mental dissonance, isolation, despair,…noise is the sound of life when it realistically comes to a head. It represents real life just as well as your average Adele ballad.
The new Wolf Eyes album does not stop that trend. It’s named I Am a Prroblem: Mind in Pieces and begins with a chord constantly ascending and descending octaves. Soon enough electronic swirls of vocals and faint drums start to spread. When not thought in a musical context, “Catching the Rich Train” sounds like the problems are just the beginning. It’s the moment where the darkness begins to suddenly form and mold. Indeed, when “Twister Nightfall” comes, Nate Young sings a line that sounds like, “your head is drowning” or “your head is crowded”. Considering the concept, either our would have fit the concept of personal turmoil perfectly.
What makes the whole album work out well is the way each song sounds exactly like an experience of inner turmoil from the stoneresque hellride of “T.O.D.D.” to the industrial thump similar to a pounding headache on “Asbestos Youth”. The latter increases the shrilling guitars and feedback until words and thoughts become nothing more than a mangled memory to which eventually some kind of mayhem is bound to form. This comes in the form of the barely controlled “Enemy Ladder”.
Wolf Eyes manages to squeal out a mix of industrial, stoner rock and dub all making for an almost too-close-to-home symphony about how problems often begin both on the inside and the outside, and that a huge amount of it can heavily impact the mind’s health. See? I told you noise and experimental music has a place in music.