Friday Night Noise: The 10 Best Noise Records of the 2000s

Here are Friday Night Noise's favorite ten 00s noise albums, in no particular order. Was this an easy list to make? Fuck no.

1. Various Artists, Women Take Back The Noise (UBUIBI) Roughly 10,000 noise compilations were issued in the 00s, but how many came with a noise-making device? How many came packaged in a clear plastic case (pink, blue, purple, or orange) with b&w bio cards? How many were wide-ranging, three-disc sets of woman-generated subterranian internationalized awesomeness?

2. Lightning Bolt, Wonderful Rainbow (Load)

A strident statement of noise-rock purpose as enraged and ear-damaging as it is coherent - and the reason that Lightning Bolt are the only noise band your square friends have heard of aside from maybe Wolf Eyes.

3. The Dead C., Future Artists (Ba Da Bing)

For the 1,500th time, hey're not a fucking noise band, you whine. But FNN would argue that these uncomproming new Zealand experimentalists switched sides for this album, forgoing Michael Morley's slovenly vocals to concentrate on unusually cryptic, extended-play sonics capable of transporting listeners to nightmare countries that can't be found on existing maps.

4. Sightings, Absolutes (Load)

Post-industrial intent so brutal and unvarnished that it registers as offense, as misanthropy. Worse: guitars, bass, drums, and vocals meld into a single brawling, mind-numbing churn.

5. Dead Machines, Futures (Troubleman Unlimited)

FNN has yet to come across another noise platter with the same sense of aural physicality. Futures manages to pack enough ideas for 20 records into one; what's more, the parts cohere nicely into a disorienting, tape-manipulated whole.

6. Yellow Tears, The Pissmop LP (Hospital Productions)

Noise/experimental critics - including FNN - are fond of overusing end-of-days metaphors, but Pissmop actually does sound like a similacrum of collapse, of systems shutting down completely and irretrievably, of worlds and cultures and even cell-structures regressing and crumbling to dust. Sinister.

7. Cash Slave Clique, White Prop$ (Panic Research Audio)

This has absolutely nothing to do with rap. This has absolutely everything to do with hallucinatory vertigo and auditory saturation.

8. Wolf Eyes, Human Animal (Sub Pop)

Noise's Grateful Dead - or maybe the genre's Nirvana, depends on who you ask - here pursue an incremental, gradualist approach to scaring the living spit out of you. (By the way, Wolf Eyes worship Smegma, and with good reason. FNN heartily recommends Pigs for Lepers.)

9. Needlegun, The End of August at Hotel Ozone (MT6)

You know how AT&T's catchphrase is "Your world, delivered"? Hotel Ozone's catchphrase is "your world, in a blender, with formaldehyde and ipecac."

10. Khate, Field Report (self-released)

The dark arts, circuit bent, catacombed, endless: the static-drenched sound of illuminated smog.

A question for y'all: what were your favorite noise albums of the 00s?

Got some hot Texas noise tips - or, hell, any noise tips - or local noise event listings for us? Hit FNN up with MP3s or Web site links - but not MySpace links, seriously, because we can't access those at work and at home every spare moment is spoken for - at [email protected]. If you run a noise-centric label and you're releasing something, drop me a line and we'll send you our mailing address.

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Ray Cummings