Thursday, March 18, 2021

Album Review: Thurston Moore - screen time

Thurston Moore
screen time
** out of *****

Sonic Youth was an outfit that would release major label noise rock offerings throughout their career and then indulge their more avant-garde side with smaller projects that explored less mainstream ideals on their own label. Thurston Moore has continued this trend with his solo work, albums like Rock N Roll Consciousness and By The Fire were both followed by experimental works like Spirit Counsel and now screen time.

This instrumental offering consists of various string plucking as more layers get added and subtracted from Moore's guitar. The first three tracks all have the same motif with clanging unsettling strings getting grated at various rates of irritant. "the station" begins with the most angular sounds while "the town" is still unsettling but introduces swelling chimes while "the home" delivers tense twinkling with success.

"the view" shift gears and the result is the best of the instrumental offerings presented on screen time. The chilled out nuanced vibe makes for gorgeous cinematic scope with delicate playing and vibrant essence. 

Most of the songs however fit the same clanging string formula and offer little in way of nuance, the tracks tend to run too long and never deliver much direction. Closer "the realization" attempts to sum everything up with repeating scratches, loops and sonic chimes and while meatier than what has come before, never illuminates fully.  

As a whole the screen time is an interesting listen but one many fans will probably not spend a lot of time with as songs like the ominous vibrating clanging of "the upstairs", the minimalist strums of "the dream" and the demo sounding "the park bench", are all fine for the moment but (like the album as a whole) remain one note in tone, leaving no visceral lasting imprint. screen time feels more sketch than finished product, but with Moore, all guitar phases and releases are worth checking in on.   
Support the artist, buy the album, stream it on bandcamp or below and peep some video:

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