With An Object, their fourth full-length album, No Age has forgone the
straight and narrow route, landing in a strange and unexpected place,
feet planted in fresh, fertile soil. This new LP finds drummer/vocalist
Dean Spunt exploding from behind his kit, landing percussive blows
with amplified contact mics, 4-string bass guitars, and prepared speakers,
as well as traditional forms of lumber and metal. Meanwhile, guitarist
Randy Randall corrals his previously lush, spastic, sprawling arrangements
into taught, refined, rats' nests. Lyrically Spunt challenges space,
fracturing ideological forms and complacency, creating a striking new
perspective that reveals thematic preoccupations with structural ruptures
and temporal limits.
As the title An Object suggests, these eleven tracks are meant to be
grasped, not simply heard. Whether in the fine grit of Randall’s sandpaper
guitar scrapes on "Defector/ed," or Spunt's percussive stomp and crack
on "Circling with Dizzy" and "An Impression," these are songs that pivot
on the sheer materiality of music-making, incorporating the process
every step of the way.
Still, this is hardly a work of avant garde noise music. These songs are
hummable, political, recognizably rooted in underground rock, and
informed by an understanding of sound as a material to be shaped,
handled, and worked over. It is an aesthetic in which the relationships
between guitar, percussion, and vocals—as well as those between rhythm
and melody—become relationships between things.
These relationships are built into An Object at every level. In collaboration
with friend and Grammy-nominated designer Brian Roettinger (5 E.P.'s,
Nouns, Losing Feeling, Everything In Between), the band prepared and
assembled the physical packaging of An Object, including jackets,
inserts, and labels, fusing the roles of manufacturer, artist, and musician
into one. It is this sense of the total work of art that underlines An Object
as the culmination of two years of touring, writing, and performing,
finding No Age moving into new terrain at the height of their powers.
An Object was recorded by longtime No Age collaborator Facundo
Bermudez and No Age at Gaucho's Electronics in Los Angeles.