Fuzz duo The Noise Figures return after two years with new album
The simplicity of music, can sometimes be a liberating thing. When you are recording with limited ingredients, drums and guitars, you have to get creative to produce something memorable and enjoyable. This is what the Noise Figures have done, with new album Aphelion.
Recorded in five days on vintage equipment at Artracks Studios in Athens, Aphelion practically fizzes with retro charm. While guitar and drums duo aren’t anything new these days, White Stripes/Black Diamond Heavies /Black Keys, the Noise Figures have slightly changed the formula adding a rich vein of slow rhythmic melody to their songs rather than relying on fast blistering riffs and squelching solos.
Shoot the Moon starts the proceedings in fine form. While musically it’s nothing more than a few riffs and simple drum patterns, it contains a level of angst that says “We’ve had enough!”. Being Grecian this was bound to come across, due to international sanctions being imposed on their country. In the Boneyard follows this theme musically speaking, but there isn’t the venom in the vocals. The band has also managed to add space to their compositions, making it feel slightly less claustrophobic without losing the heaviness. Run changes things slightly by adding an organ. They helps conjure up a light playful surf vibe, which changes the tone from the initial heavy dour beginnings. Title track Aphelion is a slow jam that oozes longing and redemption, until it breaks and all hell, musically speaking, breaks loose. Given the meaning of title, a point in the orbit of a planet when it is furthers from the sun, these breaks do give a sense of emptiness and loss. Feathers ramps things up again for the final sprint home, until Celebration Time closes the album with euphoria and hope.
Aphelion is strong second album. The Noise Figures have built on their debut, but not lost anything that made them interesting and exciting in the first place. As with albums of this nature, after four to five songs it starts to get samey, luckily this doesn’t last too long, and the album gets back on track again. Roll on album three…