NAH’s Urgent My Blood For You stitches scraps of sound into a riveting record
There’s nothing in Philly quite like a NAH concert. There’s nothing in DIY quite like a NAH record.
Last seen around these parts at Cousin Danny’s on a rainy / sweaty Saturday night back in January, the experimental instrumental project of locally-rooted / Belgium-based percussionist and sound designer Michul Kuun released its latest project, Urgent My Blood For You, last month.
It’s tough to pinpoint where exactly in NAH’s chronology this record falls; it’s not as simple as “fourth self-released LP” and whatnot, since Kuun’s discography is a sprawling lineage of demos, EPs, LPs, and compilations, some released under his own name, and some under the NAH banner. Suffice it to say, this is an artistic practice Kuun has been perfecting for the better part of a decade, going back to when he started cooking up NAH on the side of 1994!, the Lancaster two-piece he played in with singer-guitarist Chris Diehm.
On the new record, NAH works its trademark juxtaposition of brutal, aggressive noise with irresistibly dancy rhythms. “Heady Cult Jam” is a blistering, blown out collage of fuzzy audio, choppy rhythms, and serene synth melodies. “The Worst” moves at a blistering tempo and an almost drum-and-bass beat. “Executioner 420” makes a slick, momentary incorporation of the Brandy hit “Down” towards its conclusion.
In addition to his own forays into the outer realms of sound, Kuun invites a handful of collaborators to take part in this project. The skittish “Yazz Scalp” is paired with sick free jazz sax leads by Cene Resnik. “I Don’t Know How To Breathe” finds Kuun collaborating with tourmate Danny Orlowski of NYC’s Deli Girls, who delivers visceral howls into a suffocating atmosphere. And on “Half Dead Aimless,” Moneynicca delivers abstract screams drenched in echo and delay. The album is bookended by philosophical musings spoken by vocalist Nappy Nappa.
The album trades in riveting tones and textures — the beat on “Master of Patience” rattles mellifluously like someone hammering sixteenth notes on a PVC pipe (which it quite possibly might be), while the minute-long “Maybe The Most Relaxing Part” lives up to its name in terms of pace and tempo, but the atmosphere of conflicting synth tones is also somewhat disorienting.
Still, Urgent My Blood For You is a compelling, can’t put it down energy, a jolt of energy when you might just need it the most. Listen below and grab a download at Bandcamp.