Nøise is what happens when a brilliant modern visual artist, innovative DJ’s and a cadre of incredibly experienced musicians join forces to make some very appealing audio magic. The results are more than just mere music and beyond the promise of normal mortal bands. With more songs to listen to right now than there are stars in the sky, why should your average enthusiast pay attention to this highly anticipated musical creation?
Because Nøise’s latest EP is a shining promise of what we have to anticipate from the band in the future. “Little Lions,” one of the tracks on the EP, is as complex and intriguing as the music video that accompanies it. Taunt with tension, haunted by the ghost of the song’s own spectral promise of love, sadness and regret, the song is perfect for a night where you just want to drink hard liquor and think about the good times, the bad times, and the shadowy spaces between as the party moves on around you.
“Little Lions” is dark yet deliciously upbeat from the tantalizing start to a hypnotic reverberating finish. The song moves at a brisk pace, punctuated by accelerated beats, prancing guitars and synthetic reverberations that keep you wondering until the very last note. There are songs within this song, places where the changes transfix you, similar to hellish faerie light manifesting like sonoluminescence from some mesmerizing siren song, part psychic, part demonic, transfixing you with hypnotic, sensual rapture. Nøise knows how to hex the listener because the magicians behind the band have been captivating us for decades. Their names and creations are already legendary.
You are certainly familiar with the artist known as Shepard Fairey, probably because of the famous Barack Obama “Hope” image and the somewhat disturbing Obey Giant logo campaign, which featured WWF star Andre “The Giant” staring down at you within a symbol that brought to mind both 1984 and the horror film They Live by John Carpenter. However, Fairey is also a music DJ, as capable of manipulating Serato and MP3’s as he is line and color, which is how the idea for the band Nøise incarnated.
Fairey contacted many other musicians to make Nøise happen including DJ’s and artists known for their futuristic, visionary achievements such as Moby, Crystal Method, Phil Hartnoll, Tim Armstrong, DJ Z-Trip, Nico and Touch, SSI, John Goff, Merritt Lear, Joe Cassidy and Ravi Zupa. The art for the EP’s album cover is worth spending money to own, featuring a bold black, gold and red design with a lion standing triumphantly in the center, a fitting visual proclamation for a band whose veterans are so already independently accomplished. I already want to own the t-shirt.
To celebrate the first EP release from Nøise, Fairey himself hosted a release party at the Subliminal Projects gallery in Los Angeles, where he put his years of experience as a DJ to work performing for an audience of enthusiastic friends, fans and family. A visual artist composing music? Why not? In a recent interview with the magazine known as Rolling Stone, Fairey said, "Iggy paints and David Bowie painted. Z-Trip can throw a tag down like you wouldn't believe. A lot of my heroes in music are people who dabbled in art," Fairey says. "Our culture likes people to stay in their lane. I'm fine to be an irritant by not staying in my lane."
In contrast to “Little Lions”, another song on the EP, “Automatic,” remixed by Moby, is vibrant, spontaneous and positive. Bouncing with digital glee, electrified with evocative beats, vocals and chords that whirl and prance, “Automatic” is a smart reminder that the band known to us as Nøise has a lot more music to offer because the people that comprise it are as talented as they are diverse.
Musician Joe Cassidy has mentioned that Joe Strummer and Lee “Scratch” Perry have been some of his inspirations while working on the project. “Not so much in terms of their music exactly, but more like, ‘What would these two think of these songs in 2016?’” Your audience empathizes, Cassidy. More Nøise ASAP, please.
Subliminal Projects: http://subliminalprojects.com/