Xiu Xiu; Prurient; Common Eider, King Eider | Bottom Lounge | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Xiu Xiu; Prurient; Common Eider, King Eider Critic's Choice Early Warnings (Music) Recommended The List (Music) Soundboard

When: Wed., Sept. 3, 9 p.m. 2008
Phone: 312-666-6775
Price: $15
I can’t put my finger on when, but the specs on your average harsh-noise dude have changed from socially inept doughbody in an oversize black T-shirt to sweaty jock stripped to the waist and punching the air, howling a paean to permanent hearing loss. By and large both species make my belly shake like a bowl full of jelly—but not Dominick Fernow, aka Prurient, even though he’s of the latter sort. With a voice like a leaden vane turning carelessly in a windstorm and a melancholic hand that sows his tracks with salt, he’s gutted, saturnine, barren. His latest, And Still, Wanting (No Fun), is the sound of someone suffering from the kind of breakup that drives people into lifelong celibate hermitude. You can picture him sitting there, dumbstruck, tortured into despair by the accumulation of tiny banalities, and in fact the record’s crumpling, shrieking noise is like the actual sounds of loneliness amplified and distorted: bugs skittering through the kitchen, a match struck against brick, a glass filling from the tap. And Fernow recites dull, emptied-out words to match: “I can’t tell you the number of letters unsent,” he says on “Total Terrorism.” He’d come off emo if he were parading his pain, but there’s neither pride nor shame in it—only catharsis. —Liz Armstrong



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