Black Dice
w/Mono, Kinski

Tues Nov 12, I-Spy, $8.

Often dubbed "noise terrorists" by the media, Black Dice are actually more like a collection of noise therapists--if your constitution can handle the catharsis. The sound the Brooklyn-based quartet produces on stage is the sort that you feel in your stomach more than you hear, and they play it at volumes you worry could leach the calcium from your bones--sonic booms that leave even the most resilient fan brittle and ploughed. It's fucking loud.

With touchstones like Harry Pussy and Merzbow, it's little wonder why Black Dice play music the way they do; the band was conceived in Providence, Rhode Island's seminal music, art, and theory scene, and they used to play shows at Fort Thunder, a loft space near the Rhode Island School of Design (which also gave sway to artists like Arab on Radar and Lightning Bolt). After moving to New York, Black Dice--wafer-thin blond brothers Eric (vocals) and Bjorn Copeland, and the huskier Hisham Bharoocha (drums) and Aaron Warren (bass)--released several EPs on Troubleman Unlimited that saw them move from short bursts of hardcore rage (one self-titled record featured 15 tracks, most of which were 30 seconds long) to 15-minute-long, distended compositions that eschew all pop convention with glee. The lyrics (when there are lyrics) are usually nothing more than phonemes, screamed or whispered at appropriately creepy levels throughout the music's flow, connoting disparate emotions--disease, anger, ennui.

Their debut full-length, Beaches and Canyons, exhibits an affinity for melody and variation of mood. Recorded by Nicolas Vernhes (who also produced Fischerspooner's #1), the record was released on the DFA label, home of celebrated neo-dance punks the Rapture. The record is composed of surprisingly soft, ambient songs, which in Black Dice's case is a plus. Stretching out their music and developing their skills has lent the band a subtlety that shades the spectacle of watching them play. But that's not saying much. At a DFA showcase earlier this year in Brooklyn, Black Dice opened for the Rapture and the spectacle was still awesome--they delivered a violently original, orchestral sound, untethered to any easy MTV idiom.