Noon ~ Disquiet

America, you are fat, famished, and fleeting.  Now gloating, now moaning your cabinet shift—Earth’s mantle rumbling four letter words—are we consumed by an age of terror apprised of its errors?  Or are we gasping for air earned in appraisal of its heir urns?  Not waiting for an answer, Noon loiters thick with mustard gas in shallow trenches.  As if Jimi Hendrix were backed by a sweaty band of wolverines stoned on mescaline—testing effects pedals, armed with two amps and a few drum heads—the math rocking noise trio rouse decibels of righteous thunder.  (Don’t forget the tetanus shot.)

—American road rage.

Disquiet provides the kind of myofascial release equivalent to huffing gravel off the tarmac: After the initial nose bleed subsides—leaving nostrils numb and ears ringing—one starts savoring jet fumes with a bon vivant’s palate—gauging the role of speed in the Industrial Age.  (A game smacking of time baited and space betrayed.)

—American waste.

Wrapped in rapturous discord, Disquiet’s melodies are fit for a sharps container, requiring training for safe handling.  The trio improvises with a looseness oozing grease on an Uzi range, raining cartridges in bell house speakeasies.  (It is best to sit when feeling queasy.)  Its movements mirror a seething ouroboros: scales flickering in flames circling a writhing rat’s nest.  Necking with transients in dark alleys, soaked through with found sounds, Noon’s nine songs frolic in break loose bedlam.  (Choking on a tail of their own devising.)

—American recoil.

The guitar plays skewed lead, crazed vortexes hurling furious debris.  Evening tea: A 64-year-old accountant shot and killed 58 people, and wounded 489, at a country music festival in Paradise, Nevada.  No motive is known.  Meanwhile, bump stocks, the devices used in the massacre, remain available for $100.  (The price the average American pays for monthly car insurance.)

—American blood pressure.

The bass treads spiral staircases chipped by scattered heels, climbing steps slick with spit and kerosene.  Smokescreen: Ripe with rhetoric about “lifestyle choices,” in a clever gag of marketing, food producers publically backed Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! health campaign.  Currently, one-third of U.S. adults are clinically obese.  (Two-thirds are overweight.)

—American privilege.

The drums donkey kick sternums and ear clap onlookers, a fracas worthy of drunken monks.  Lumps or bumps: Perched on acres of Ayn Rand newspapers, Joel Olsteen—a televangelist preaching “prosperity gospel” theology—grudgingly sheltered victims of Hurricane Harvey in his 16,000-seat mega church.  (Only after great Twitter shaming.)

—American coal.

2017’s primary colors weren’t red, blue, and yellow; but red, blue, and purple—with emphasis on the red.  Tickled with laughing gas, Disquiet lingers like a Sunday hangover that even black coffee can’t cure, a hangnail that keeps running long past the cuticle.  What’s there to do when a spa date conflicts with a court date?  What’s to be done with a rash called cash that dumps shopping carts at the curb?  How does a nation cope with groping insecurities: Has Hollywood hailed a ride from Uber?  Fortunately, Noon begs no solution—answering only the same noise which bore it: sardonic humor; Ritalin-boosted time signatures; and strategic abrasion.  Fortunately, the fortune remains: Just grin and bear it.  (Or is it: gin and bare it?)

—If it ain’t broke, don’t Brexit?  (Todd B. Gruel)

About Todd B. Gruel

A bearded biped who still believes in 35mm film, 6-string guitars, and jet black cats.


  1. alberttrotter

    amazing read it is

  2. Pingback: Todd Gruel’s look back at the 2010’s in art, music etc. Review | CultureVulture

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