by Dan Goldin (@post_trash_)
Cleveland's Obnox is a modern day punk legend. While he spent time playing in several bands in the 90's, it's the years since the turn of the decade that has seen Lamont "Bim" Thomas releasing forward thinking punk music at a furious rate, with eight albums and countless EPs and singles. His approach to punk is well... punk as fuck. Obnox doesn't care about rules and he certainly isn't afraid to experiment, blending his sound with noise rock, hip-hop, garage, soul, and hardcore. It's usually abrasive and often pretty steeped in political and social consciousness, Thomas speaking as a voice for the oppressed without gimmick or pandering. After years of great genre-shifting records (Know America, Louder Space, Wiglet), his conquest for punk brilliance shifts once again, this time toward free-jazz at its most disillusioned. Set to release Templo del Sonido on August 17th via Astral Spirits / Monofonus Press, the album is free of conventions and sprawling in wide stretched poetic noise.
"America In A Blender" is the first single and a mission statement, coming on like an alarm as the record spits and contorts into its deviant free-jazz destruction. Thomas' introductory lyrics, "wake up, wake up, wake your punk ass up" set the tone under an avalanche of bleeding saxophone (played by Chuck Cieslik, who always handles lead guitar on the song) and a-melodic filth. It's the chaotic background for Obnox's manifesto, barked in part like preacher and mystic. It's time to act and while the earth gives way under the rolling freak-outs of "America In A Blender," the message is steadfast yet filled with harsh charm ("I don't know what to tell you youngin', you got a tendency to not listen to me ... I didn't get old by acting dumb"). The song's jazzier elements may scream and convulse from start to finish, but it's the clarity in tone that pulls everything together.
Obnox's Templo del Sonido is out August 17th via Astral Spirits / Monofonus Press.