Receivers

February 16, 2014 - Comment

This Brooklyn noise punk outfit has dramatically altered their wall of sound on their fourth album. It focuses on open spaces, longer movements, expansive arrangements, and loftier goals. Though they’ve maintained their love affair with glitchy oscillations and anthemic vocals, they’re now a mature art-rock quartet. This is a heady mix of psych, noise, and

This Brooklyn noise punk outfit has dramatically altered their wall of sound on their fourth album. It focuses on open spaces, longer movements, expansive arrangements, and loftier goals. Though they’ve maintained their love affair with glitchy oscillations and anthemic vocals, they’re now a mature art-rock quartet. This is a heady mix of psych, noise, and pop influenced by the arty minimalism of Wire, the surreal pop of early Eno, and the spaced out psychedelia of “Dark Side”-era Pink Floyd. LP contains digital download coupon for MP3s of the entire album.Brooklyn rock foursome Parts & Labor aims high, sometimes quite literally. The band’s fourth album, Receivers, opens with an epically sad elegy to an unspecified number of suicidal satellites. Meanwhile, the instruments burn intense musical fuel, piling layer upon layer of guitar, keyboard, drums, and billowing vocal harmonies atop a muscular quarter-note pulse rendered at relentless tempo, and the whole sonic cavalcade rockets forth at top volume. In all, “Satellites” may be the most grandiose statement of intention from an indie-rock album in years. Not that it’s totally unprecedented. Core members Dan Friel (keyboards, vocals) and BJ Warshaw (bass, vocals) already traded in gargantuan noise and imaginative songwriting on the notable Stay Afraid (2006) and Mapmakers (2007). But newly armed with guitarist Sarah Lipstate and drummer Joseph Wong, Parts & Labor have at last begun flirting with genius. In their twisted reconfiguring of popularly recognizable musical elements, the band lets shine the rock populism that distinguishes this masterpiece from its merely suggestive predecessors. True, there are feral aspects to Receivers: frequently indulgent codas, Friel’s voice (“Mount Misery,” “Wedding in a Wasteland”), and bagpipes (“Little Ones”). Each of the album’s eight songs drill through merciless decibel levels, draw filthy lyrical landscapes, and apologize for nothing. Yet ultimately, Parts & Labor offer an equal share of nirvana in return. —Jason Kirk

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