(New Album Review) Newaxeyes- Assange/Church [12″ LP]

This is certainly one of the most hard-to-pin-down releases I have listened to this year. Seattle’s Newaxeyes are an experimental quartet (Will Hayes and Tyler Coray on guitars, Bret Gardin and Jordan Rundle on synths and other electronics) who make techno with rock instrumentation, synthesizers, and sampling. Their new release “Assange/Church” was released on DivineDroid records last October. They have only been together for roughly a year and a half, but this record shows promise, eclecticism, and assurance.

Newaxeyes find inspiration in a wide variety of styles of music, and have shared bills with psych rock, hip hop, and noise. One of the most ready connections one can make with their music is with post-rock, and this is especially clear on the mini-epic “Assange”. This track sounds like a hard-edged Bowery Electric, a grim techno trip with a crystalline guitar line as the main guide. Just as intriguing is the slightly dissonant closer, “Church”, which starts off with a chirping synth wading through choppy bursts of noise and growling guitar, then abruptly transitions into a weird, murky hip-hop beat. This collective can sculpt left-of-center noise into something danceable, and already I am curious to see what they might produce on a full-length release. They would most certainly be at home at Sanctuary Sunday’s next installment of Accent/Sustain.

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