The North Sea
Grandeur & Weakness [LP; Rubber City Noise]

Grandeur & Weakness is apparently the final North Sea voyage, and what a long, strange trip it’s been; or at least I imagine so. As seems to happen all the time, this act was right under my nose for years and I never so much as sniffed. Now I’m trying to snuff up all I can before it’s closing time and it’s a little overwhelming. Back to Grandeur: Not to cliche-fuck you, but what an appropriate album title. Brad Rose (nee North Sea) strings together a slew of aural victories that all stand apart. “Empty, Fragile Shell” had me thinking of that Riceboy Sleeps album (aka spiritual drone) while, say, “Vagrant” and “Violence Is a Cleansing Force” ring of Panicsville holding up a WZT Hearts track in Starving Weirdos’ backyard. There seem to be a lot of lazers in today’s experimental records, and this one is no exception. I embrace that, along with the more extreme elements at play here, fully. It’s rare to hear a dronoise album that doesn’t beg for anything. Nothing is left off the table; the tectonic plates shift fairly regularly, but you’ll never lose footing if this crazy brand of music has had any impact on your life. Records like Grandeur keep our little pumpkin patch in the sun alive, teeming with fresh energy and wild, zesty ideas. No reason to quit now, far as I can hear. Three-hundred copies and you don’t know what hit you.


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