Noun – I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do (Stream)
by Steven Spoerl
The first post today will be dedicated to a slew of yesterday’s outstanding releases and the focus will fall on one that evaded scrutiny by virtue of a very quiet release. Before diving too far into that song, though, it’s worth taking a beat to highlight a few other great pieces of media. Free Cake For Every Creature’s lo-fi visual presentation of “Take On Me” and Jane Weaver’s mesmerizing, animated clip for “Mission Desire” both constituted strong examples of retro-leaning music videos. The full streams colored in a very broad range of punk and punk influence, containing forthcoming releases from the following: Negative Scanner, EZTV, and American Culture.
As usual, the majority of releases where very strong single streams. Knife Pleats brought out a very strong duo of tracks with both “One Step Too Far” and “Terrible”, Dark Palms unleashed the nightmarishly bruising, post-punk ripper “Dead Horse“, and Sleepy indulged their brightest pop sensibilities and blistering aggression simultaneously on the hard-charging “The Ride Up“. Worriers unloaded another brilliant politi-punk anthem with “Yes All Cops“, further suggesting that their upcoming full-length will rank among the year’s very finest releases. Shelf Life’s gently lilting (and gorgeous) “The Curse“, You Beauty.’s driving “ILLYWHACKA“, and DIV I DED’s pop-heavy shoegaze number “Electric Age” rounded the day’s releases out.
Highlighting that batch of new music was an unlikely release, quietly uploaded to bandcamp and announced via Facebook: Noun’s devastatingly beautiful acoustic ballad, “I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do”. At this point, it’s safe to assume a lot more people are familiar with guitarist/vocalist Marissa Paternoster’s work in Screaming Females than they are with either her excellent solo project, Noun, or her (relatively) new ventures in the deliriously spastic Bad Canoes. Throw in Paternoster’s elevating name recognition (and career) as an artist and it’s not surprising that a thing or two loses
The continued success of Screaming Females and the emergence of Bad Canoes seemingly relegated Paternoster’s Noun project to the back-burner but its flame was kept at a stubborn flicker during that time, with hints of a potential future release being unveiled as of late (including both “Far From Me” and “Glass Diamond“). While the live sets are still fairly infrequent, that’s made up for with the strength- and grace- of “I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do”.
Parernoster’s had a tradition of being vulnerable in her prose but it’s rarely been laid as bare or presented as intimately as it is here. A gentle bass hums underneath “I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do” as Paternoster wearily pleads for companionship in a time of desperation. Riveting, haunting, and- ultimately- heartbreaking, “I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do” presents a very strong case for Paternoster as one of this generation’s strongest voices. It’s always worth listening to what that voice has to say.
Listen to “I’m Afraid of What I’ll Do” below and keep an eye on this page for more updates on Noun.