Noise Pollution Vol. 3: Weyes Blood, I Have a Tribe, & Jess Williamson

Noise Pollution returns with new tunes from Weyes Blood, Shy Layers, Jess Williamson, and more.
By    August 17, 2016

weyes blood
Will Schube is immersing himself in art he’ll forget about in ten minutes.


Weyes Blood“Seven Words”


“These seven words I say to you” are the seven words. Get it? Weyes Blood’s latest single, “Seven Words” tries to explain moving on when words aren’t enough. These seven are a stand-in for an inability to express the feeling. It’s romantic in its heartbreak, and the track is beautiful in its longing and desperation for what will never be.

“Seven Words” is drenched in ‘70s nostalgia, beginning with a quiet yearning and Natalie Mering’s beautiful voice. The percussion is light and airy; this is a track of vocals and emotions. It’s a song that approaches catharsis, but is still too freshly wounded to have moved on entirely. Sings Mering, “I want you mostly in the morning, when my soul is weak from dreaming.” It’s a feeling all too commonly heartbreaking. Awaking from a dream in which everything is perfect and you’re with the person you’re supposed to be with; and then the pit in your stomach forms as you realize that supposed to be is really a never can be.


Imaginational Anthem Vol. 8: The Private Press


These excellent, unending private press re-issues are both a blessing and a curse. On one side: More good ass music. Dope! On the other: Holy shit, this is an unending onslaught of music, when in combination with all the books I’ll never read, all the movies I’ll never watch—not to mention all the things I’ll never make because I’m too busy consuming the lives of others—borders on masochism.

But the music is really good! So just enjoy it. “Obadlah” by Michael Kleniac is gorgeous, a loping instrumental of picked guitar and lightly sticked snare drum. And that’s pretty much what you’ll get from this perfectly curated Tompkins Square release: Great guitar music by a bunch of folks you’ve never heard of. Just press play and zone out.


I Have a Tribe“Cold Fact”


Irishman Patrick O’Laoghaire’s I Have a Tribe project is the newest discovery from quickly rising German label Grönland Records. First single “Cold Fact” is beautiful. It starts slowly and quietly—O’Laoghaire almost passive in his delivery. By the time the first chorus hits, however, confidence rises and his distinctly sweet voice accompanies sparse instrumentation. He whispers, “You’ve got skeletons, it’s fine, you’ve got time to feel safe,” and you’ve got to believe him.


Shy Layers“SEG” / “Too Far Out”


JD Walsh’s self-titled debut under the Shy Layers moniker is the sort of record that doesn’t exist without LCD Soundsystem. “Too Far Out” is disco-funk for white boys and slick dancers. It loops and repeats and settles into a pocket pushed forth by an expertly bouncing bassline. The percussive sixteenth note skips of the hi-hats are accented by the occasional snare drum that sounds like a shot out of a cannon. The vocal part is vocoded nonsense but works wonders for the track’s texture.

“SEG” is the better of the two singles, lighter and willing to laugh at itself. It’s equal parts the Drive Soundtrack and your dad’s favorite discotech on acid. The saxophone is processed through a delay, giving everything that weird strobe effect where you’re about to have a seizure but everything looks too damn cool to miss the moment.


Jess Williamson“Say It”


Jess Williamson is going on tour with Kevin Morby and the two make an interesting, off-kilter fit. Morby’s fascination with the surrounding world (just look at his song titles: “Singing Saw,” “Ferris Wheel,” “Black Flowers,” “Water”) stands in direct contradiction to Williamson’s piercing, personal song-writing style. Morby is fascinated with the world around him, Williamson with the person in it.

On “Say It,” the first single from her forthcoming Heart Song, Williamson asks, “Do you know when I need to be coddled like a child, and when I need to be ignored?” She says it’s a driving song, and the dust kicked up from the tires along a dirt road is easy to imagine while working your way through “Say It’s” six minutes. She sounds like Fiona Apple as a ‘70s country star after one too many shots of tequila and a few too many kicks to the gut. It’s great.