Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Ni - "Chicot"

Photo by Oozfos

Hailing from France, Ni are not going to be for everyone. The press release for their latest single, "Chicot," describes them as math rock, and that may be true but the song is a bit more. It's this burst of bizarre noise rock that comes bursting into your life, and may not be able to leave right away. "Chicot" reminds me of Lightning Bolt meets The Minutemen, but maybe with some classic rock guitar in there at times. It's a weird indie rock meets noise rock meets math rock meets experimental song that can just be a killer rock tune if you stop getting hung up on it.

Guitarist Francois Mignot says of the new song:

"The beginning of the track is super tense and nervous, using only dissonances, successions and superimpositions of notes close together, drawing a sort of grating melody. To accentuate this incisive edge, the guitar sounds remain clear, and saturation doesn't arrive until later in the track. The rhythm, which is omnipresent throughout the track, is based on figures which, although broken in math rock style, are intended to retain a danceable feel. At the beginning of the track, 3 of the 4 musicians play the same rhythmic motif in unison, to give it a certain foundation and a wobbly groove. The second guitar sits on top like a clever little buffoon, whose aim is to disrupt and add an extra dose of madness to the whole. This first passage is punctuated by short sounds often found in electronic music (glitch and other typical breakcore effects), which introduce a second technoid array. It consists of a rhythmic ostinato hammered out by the 4 musicians, always accentuated by the bass drum, then coloured and textured by the guitars and bass in the manner of an electronic track. This part takes the form of a great climb towards an explosion of energy, bringing back the shaggy, squeaky elements of the beginning, while transforming them into a more rock and massive energy. This transition, like an echo of the beginning, leads the track into a final tableau where the tempo and rhythm collapse, like a sudden drop from the heights of energy reached previously. The listener is then invited, by a surge of rock, noise and metal energy, to land and end up buried under the rubble of the track."

You can listen to "Chicot" below. Fol Nais is due out December 1 on Dur et Doux, and is available for pre-order via Bandcamp. For more on Ni, check out the band's website.

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