NEW ICONS OF A VILE FAITH: Genre-defying Denver Band Echo Beds Bridge The Gap Between Nine Inch Nails & Death Grips with “SEEK SAFE HAVEN” (Sole’s Black Box Tapes)
Denver-bred genre-defying Echo Beds are the latest signees to politically-charged emcee and former Anticon founder Tim “Sole” Holland‘s latest label venture, Black Box Tapes. I would likely describe Echo Beds’ rather long-winded “overdriventapehissnoisewall- landscapemetaldrumpummelpainfacevolumetherapy” sound of something strangely evocative of what an imagined missing link between late 80’s-1990’s Industrial Rockforefathers Nine Inch Nails and their critically-acclaimed modern day counterparts,Noise/Aggro-Rap group Death Grips; an obtuse indefinable sound, better yet, self-described by bassist/vocalist Keith Curts and beat-maker Tom Nelson as “a caterwaul of contact-mic’d oil drums, broken cymbals, battered basses, unrecognizable tape loops, and dilapidated voices with the expressed intention of volume as therapy and put it through the grinder of self-practiced D.I.Y. ethos.” Echo Beds’ latest music video, “SEEK SAFE HAVEN” was premiered at (awesomely titled) Black Metal & Brews earlier this week. It’s an eerily ominous presentation directed by Kim Shively, which seamlessly inter-splices foundB-movie Horror footage with what appears to be dimly lit live performance footage of Echo Beds ripping it up at their Denver rehearsal space. Curts and Nelson are gearing up to unleash their Black Box Tapes debut, NEW ICONS OF A VILE FAITH around April 29-May 1st on cassette and soon thereafter on 12-inch vinyl, which will imminently be pressed and released by Sailor Records. Echo Beds have additionally prepared an opaque red swirl“Licking Wounds” 7-inch limited to 125 pieces on their own Temporal Decompressionimprint and will only be made available for purchase on their upcoming Spring 2016 Tour, a sprawling 21-date cross-country trek which is set to span from May 1-26th. NEW ICONS OF A VILE FAITH is currently available for pre-order at Black Box Tapes’ Bandcamp page in either high-quality digital download or a befittingly cassette & T-shirt combo pack, with Sailor Records’ 12-inch release only imminent, at this point.
High Expectations From the Lowest Common Denominator (Album)
Subterranean yet otherworldly sounds — like what you might hear if you were to somehow set up microphones in the endless tunnels of H.P. Lovecraft‘s Mountains of Madness — start off this live recording from the 2011 Denver Noise Fest. At points, the creeping, ambient noise of bio-mechanical entities in the middle distance are interrupted by feral screams or roars echoing nearby. And it’s all punctuated by bursts of sound, like steam suddenly shooting unexpectedly and violently from a fissure in the floor. Did Echo Beds model the sound of water dripping in a cave? Are Tom Nelson and Keith Curts channeling some creature hidden in the secret places of the earth that we only hear about in folklore and horror movies? It sure sounds like it throughout this recording, which is abstract yet infused with terrifying immediacy. – Westword – Tom Murphy
Best Use of Non-Traditional Percussion – 2012
Take a contact mike and one or more of the following: water bottle, stacked cymbals, detached hood of a car, a sheet of metal, floor tom, chains, bricks, file cabinet — any item that can make a sharp, clattering sound — and process or amplify the sounds these items make together, and you’ll get a bit of the confrontational and eruptive sounds that Echo Beds uses in all of its sets. Echo Beds is to noise or the avant-garde now what Suicide was to the New York underground scene in the 1970s. These are not percussive sounds and textures for the sake of a cheap startle; they work in the context of unconventional songs and compositions. With its distinctive approach to rhythm, Echo Beds is effectively creating a new industrial music to reflect the harsh realities of the current era. – Westword
Arsonist Alibi E.P. (Album)
Denver’s Echo Beds has been terrorizing DIY audiences around town with scrap metal and contact mics for a minute now, forging an industrial aesthetic that catastrophically crashes as much as it crawls across the skin. To boot, though this is certainly noise, it’s important to note the musicality present here as well. Improvised in practice, maybe, shapely and well-composed nonetheless. Still, if you have a comfort zone, get the fuck out of it right now.
– Tiny Mix Tapes