Live at Union Pool, Brooklyn, NY

Above photo: Britta Leuermann.
Video footage by Bryan Zimmerman.

featured in Paper Mag
"5 Loudest New New York Bands"

by Simon Toop

Like a phoenix, The Psychic Paramount rise from the ashes of one of New York's other loudest bands, forgotten '90s noise-rockers Laddio Bolocko, to unleash a greatly improved, more focused version of that band's deranged racket on audiences everywhere. Although TPP made a minor splash in the experimental rock scene with 2005's Gamelan Into The Mink Supernatural, this year's follow-up, II, is their real coming-out party. Built around an obscenely tight bass-drums-guitar power trio, II is thrilling, a diamond-sharp bulldozer of an instrumental rock album that effortlessly demonstrates just how much noise three people can make playing in a traditional format if they really put their minds to it. None of this would matter if they couldn't fully realize their dynamic space jams live, but, lucky for us, they totally bring it during their smoke-machine-and-light-show-assisted live show, one of the most punishing and relentless I've ever seen. Catch one of their rare hometown shows and relive the glory days of Hawkwind and Blue Cheer through the lens of '80s no-wave and early '00s math rock. And get your eardrums blown out. Stream excerpts of their two albums here.

Show review from July 26, 2011 at Union Pool in Brooklyn, NY
from NYC taper
Posted by acidjack - 15/08/11

New York crowds are notoriously, almost epically jaded. As much as bands love the exposure of America’s largest city and cultural capital, they also tend to be dispirited by the “show me” attitude of crowds that have seen it all before. Being from Brooklyn themselves, The Psychic Paramount must know this all too well - which is why they pulled out all the stops at Union Pool on a recent Tuesday night to deliver a jaw-dropping set that was one of the most incredible I have seen this year. Cloaked for the duration in thick billows of smoke, their set, culled primarily from their latest release, II, left the crowd in awe at the vortex of sound coming from this three-man band. I don’t know that I have been to another show this year that had as many audience members actually talking about the show when it was over - and stark silent during. These instrumental songs seethe with emotion; even staring into shadows in the smoke, you can’t help but be moved by them. It doesn’t hurt, of course, that they are rendered by players of obvious talent and technical skill - bassist Ben Armstrong and guitarist Drew St. Ivany first met in the now-defunct art-noise-jazz band Laddio Bolocko, a less rock n’ roll but no less compelling outfit, and drummer Jeff Conaway is (as in most three pieces) the glue that gives the band its propulsive, driving sound. Bands like TPP are the artists that live shows were made for - even this fine recording cannot capture their brilliance. Mark your calendars, folks - their next show is September 3 right here in Brooklyn...

The Psychic Paramount return to Union Pool for two nights - Oct. 8 + 9 with Trans Am. Leading up will be appearances in Baltimore at the Talking Head (10/6) and at the 9:30 Club in Washington DC (10/7).