Bringing the darkness back to psychedelia, QUIET MAN is anything but quiet. The sludge-infused kaleidoscopic debut album, The Starving Lesson is as political and ecologically bent as it is emotionally and spiritually compelling. “It’s hard to write about anything else when you see what is happening to the planet and to our community,” the band states. The Starving Lesson is due out via Riff Merchant Records and Astralands 7/14.
“This isn’t rainbows and sunshine psych, this is peaking on acid in a car accident shit,” the band states of the album. “We want the music, especially live, to be a more physical sensory experience. I think music has the power to change the physiology of a person and we really strive to give people a psychedelic experience and sense of catharsis through the performance.”
The soundtrack to the self-extinction of man, The Starving Lesson is a stark proclamation of the inevitable end.
The record kicks off with “Pressure to Burrow” The destruction of the self on both the micro and macro levels, the track about watching the people you love falling prey to chaotic drug use, drawing a thematic parallel to the self-destructive ecocide we perpetrate as a species.
“At Operating Temp” is a noise interlude that introduces sounds from numbers stations, encoded and usually automated messages sent to espionage agents over shortwave radio frequencies. These transmissions will outlast all life on Earth. “From Tomorrow’s Dead Hiss” raises the stakes from simple self-destruction to ecological genocide. “It parallels the dulling and cheapening of human life through the machinations of capitalism to the dulling and cheapening of the Earth and her resources,” the band elaborates.
The military industrial machine in “Set to Boil is the New Standard” is Frankenstein’s monster long unchained from any master bent on total domination and anti-life. It is programmed to feed on the blood of the exploited for meaningless capital to the end-state of annihilation.
“The Post Abandoned” uses sounds from shortwave stations including the “dead hand system” meant to trigger nuclear retaliation in the case that there is nobody left alive to “push the button”.
While “The Starving Lesson” is a plea to leave the machine to not participate in its violence.
“All Along We Were Beautiful Radiant Things” is a recontextualization of a very hopeful and inspiring quote from Emma Goldman’s Living My Life: “I want freedom, the right to self-expression, everybody’s right to beautiful, radiant things.’ Anarchism meant that to me, and I would live it in spite of the whole world — prisons, persecution, everything. Yes, even in spite of the condemnation of my own closest comrades I would live my beautiful ideal.”
The Starving Lesson was recorded by Scot Moriarty at Backroom Studios in Rockaway, NJ and mastered by Magnus Lindberg (CULT OF LUNA).