When ever-less-obscure author H.P. Lovecraft wrote “The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown,” it may as well have been the lead-in to an essay about Noise music. Because, in all of its gut-punching, screeching, masochistic migraine-inducing, sine-wave ripping, sadistic brain-twisting, lobe-scrambling, and tympanic membrane-tearing it has a purpose: making the listener feel those very old emotions. Noise seeks to puncture the primal roots and let their contents leak out where everyone can sift through them in a disagreeable-but-necessary exploration of the unknown and fear-inducing.
For the last five years Margaret Chardiet, in her guise as Pharmakon, has been one of the most meticulous, adventurous, and effective purveyors of those primordial and ever-present states of mind. While her live shows have been numerous, her recorded output is desperately small. When May 14 rolls around, she’ll be spreading her carefully crafted black miasma further with the help of storied label Sacred Bones. Pharmakon’s first LP to rise out of the cassette-fetishists’ club is called Abandon; check out “Crawling on Bruised Knees” below for a taste of the coming wickedness. Play it loud, and prepare a soft spot on the floor to spasm and convulse after the song is over. That’s normal; it means the music did its job and made you feel those necessarily unpleasant things.
01. Milkweed/It Hangs Heavy
04. Crawling on Bruised Knees
• Sacred Bones: http://www.sacredbonesrecords.com
[Photo: Jane Pain]