Distorted Living

Vinyl LP

Clayton Noone (aka CJA) has been cranking oddball noise out of Dunedin since before your mom even heard of the town. The same goes for Beth Dawson (aka Ducklingmonster) and Pat Kraus (aka Kraus), who co-founded this sci-fi-punk-astro-juggernaut back in 2001. They invited Clayton to join right away. Kraus left soon after, to be replaced by Jason Aldridge (aka ISO-12) and Sean Norling (aka Rocko Mandroid), although he still hangs around and his head actually pops up on this very LP. I guess the concept of distorted living has too strong a pull on his  brain.

Regardless of the fact that Clayton runs several labels, most notably the very long-lived Root Don Lonie for Cash, this appears to be only the second album-length vinyl offering Futurians have thus far done. There have been more than a few amazing cassettes and CDRs and lathes, but this is really only LP #2 (unless I am very confused). Not sure why more labels have not jumped onto the Futurians bandwagon over the last 17 years, but hey, we can’t all have the wisdom of Spock.

Distorted Living is a flat-out hoseload of cosmic gas from its first grunt ’til its last. Shorthanders will be tempted to describe it as “Mu Mesons play Hawkwind” or something. And while that is not completely off-base, it only captures certain aspects of the very specially spaced weirdness this band conveys. Knowing their visuals solely from their packaging and Youtube, I can only say that they look like they’d pass for great space hippies on a late period episode of the original Star Trek. And the way they compress the psychedelic thrust of their sonics makes one think this whole album may have been recorded in an air lock. One customer at the store, hearing the test pressing, asked “Is that lasers?” And while we made fun of him for not knowing that lasers are silent, later, as we listened more, we realised that if some sentient lasers decided to start a band it would probably sound a whole lot like Futurians.

Which is the very nature of Distorted Living. Something, which if you are wise, you are about to experience first hand. Welcome aboard.

-Byron Coley, 2017