Paik: Satin Black
Paik are wicked conjurers of a seriously delirious thunder, unleashing a maelstrom of sound that is as lilting as it is crushing. A power trio of guitar/bass/drums, the band first streaked across the Michigan space-gaze scene in 1997, seeking to chart out new aural frontiers within a rock format. With the industrial playground of Detroit serving as their gritty muse, Paik seem to have discovered their own particular portal in sound, a massive sonic whirlpool capable of absorbing everything in its sphere. Live, Paik employ an elaborate light show, a stunning spectacle that can re-wire the doors of perception via a marriage of psychotropic visuals and saturating, bulldozing drone-scapes. Setting Paik truly apart from the pack is their uncanny ability to combine grace with grit, a balancing act that matches melodic, multi-hued sonorities with powerful furnace blasts of volume. Three albums are under their belt (Hugo Strange, Corridors and The Orson Fader), as well as an appearance on a 3-way split CD entitled Crickets and Firefiles with kindred spirits Kinski and Surface of Eceyon. Satin Black is the band's latest foray into sound; an expansive, densely woven album laden with dreamscapes heavier than any the band has unfurled before.
Swelling with lush yet careworn soundscapes, Satin Black plays host to a mosaic of textures, decorating arrangements that are majestic in scope but never abandon the will to "rawk". Walls of guitar provide the magic carpet, but Paik is no mere shoegaze or space rock act. At low volume the guitars ring and chime, at blistering volume they are gritty and rugged, a worn-in sound layered with rusted haze. Beginning with "Jayne Field" , Paik have crafted their most overtly beautiful tune, as tolling guitar lines wind gilded wire around melodic bass and propulsive precussion, building and swelling to a hypnotic end. Over the course of Satin Black, odd tunings and gallons of guitar afterburn wash up with bottom-heavy riffs, gigantic drums. Intense volume, blistering feedback and numerous effects coalesce to reveal ghostly harmonics that dart in and out of the mix. Paik is at their exploratory best with the closing tune "Stellar Meltdown en el Oceano", a monochromatic, minimalist drone excursion under which a galaxy of activity is revealed to the attentive ear. Stretching five compositions out to total just about an hour's worth of music, Satin Black is both cinematic and visceral, an album that can at once transport the mind into a dazzling cosmic high, only to completely lacerate it beyond recognition.
Evoking the roaring resonance of Kevin Shields' levitating guitar innovations and the minimalist weight of a band like Earth, Paik are a heady force on the avant rock map. Satin Black is truly a beautiful noise.
Satin Black by Paik is licensed under a Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.