Monday, August 22, 2011

Nudibranch - Automaton

Label: Self released
Year: 1995

A few weeks ago I had a hankering to digitize some records I've had sitting around being all analog and not being digital, so I asked my friend James Joyce (yes, THE James Joyce) if I could come over and listen to records, digitize them, and drink some beers. Not a bad night huh? So first off, we gotta big up Double J for the hospitality. Then, we gotta talk about this particular 'lil gem. When I was flipping through my 7"s, this one jumped out as the quintessential Shiny Grey Monotone candidate. It's a little known 1990's band that hailed from the once-and-future hotbed of Richmond, Virginia, that came along and blitzkrieged anyone lucky enough to see or hear them before splintering off into a hundred fragments (or in this case an equally mysterious/great band called Gingwine) before anyone even knew what was happening. Certainly you can hear the influence of hardcore in here (I would hope they had moshed their balls off at a few Four Walls Falling / Shadowman / Elizabeth Herz triple bills prior to forming this band), but they take it in a very distorted and blown-out direction, not unlike Pachinko, or someone else...who would also be characterized as "not unlike Pachinko". The vocals are a wash of muffled groans and bellows, the guitar cuts across rhythm section's pounding stutters as they drone, stop and start again. Noise-punk?
I only saw them play once (where upon I purchased this very record) and they were an unstoppable train that belted the sparse crowd across the face from start to finish. I also clearly remember the drummer absolutely staring a hole through my girlfriend (now wife, thank you very much [and yes, I'm sure she was thrilled the be there...I was "that guy" who drug his poor girlfriend to shows...and why she stuck with me I'll never know]) for the duration of the set, which somehow didn't make either of us uncomfortable, more like, "I wonder if that guy can hold this up the whole show?". It added to the overall strangeness of the band, in a good way, and made the performance all the more memorable (obviously, right? it was almost 20 years ago).
Highly, highly recommended.



Anonymous said...

It's Gingwin. Also spawned Hot New Dance Hits. Connections to RPG, Orlock and

Gray said...

the spelling of Gingwin has been corrected. good eye.

White Diesel said...

Jeez man, what a killer band... I had never heard of them, thanx for the introduction. If you ever post another Nudibranch release, I will build a shiny grey statue here in greece. Cheers

Лео said...

finally! I've been waiting almost 5 years for someone to post Nudibranch.

thank you thank you thank you

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