(Copyright © 2003 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
Hugo Strange (1998), 6/10
Corridors (2001), 6.5/10
The Orson Fader (2002), 6.5/10
Satin Black (2004), 7/10
Monster Of The Absolute (2006), 6/10

Paik are a power trio from Michigan that practice a variant of instrumental stoner/drone rock. Their lengthy pieces mix My Bloody Valentine' shoegazing vertigoes, Sonic Youth's minimalist repetitions, and Earth's super-heavy distortions. Their first albums were: Hugo Strange (1998 - Beyonder, 2004), still relatively close to the shoegazing model, Corridors (Beyonder, 2001 - Alley, 2004), with the anthemic Tinsel and Foil and a tighter sound, and the heavier The Orson Fader (Clairecords, 2002), with its brutal title-track.

Satin Black (Strange Attractors, 2004) brings their sound to maturity on both fronts. Despite its length, Jayne Field is closer to the traditional song format than they ever were. The theme is developed with cunning understanding of dynamics, alternating between hypnosis and excitement. Dizzy Stars stretches the idea further, and soaks it into a ghostly atmosphere. The soaring and cacophonous Dirt for Driver is a monument of introspection and terror, but it still pales in comparison with Stellar Meltdown en el Oceano, a massive drone that works its way into the psyche for 14 minutes, with little or no variation. Satin Black is the satori of the album. It does showcase the kind of thunderous, glacial noise that the other tracks promised, while, on the other hand, emphasizing a warm melodic motif, albeit camouflaged inside one long modulated distortion. The merge of antithetic colossal emotions could well be one of the fundamental themes of the near future of music.

Monster Of The Absolute (Strange Attractors, 2006) is the (relatively) relaxed, laid-back companion to Satin Black, particularly the stately nine-minute Monster Of The Absolute.

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(Copyright © 2003 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
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