Endon’s Newest Record’s Caustic Noise Attack Gloriously Upends Expectations

There’s no easy way around Endon’s newest album Boy Meets Girl, which releases in the West via Thrill Jockey on February 15. If you’re afraid of waves of noise, chilling soundscapes, and everything you love getting thrown through a sonic blender — turn back now.

The Japanese band have always been known for the way they push boundaries ever further outward, and that factor of their music shines through loud and clear on their newest effort. This time around though, their material feels differently focused than before, turning their wild noise’s attention more explicitly on love and loss above just rabid mania. Boy Meets Girl almost feels at times like a parody of some modern pop and rock that takes on love — and even other forms of media that do the same — but not to the point of abandoning their own, self-contained mission statement.

While knocking established artistic conventions off their pedestals, the noise masters in Endon also knock us as people off our own “pedestals.” Their music feels like it offers a comprehensive, almost morbid picture of the true scope of “love” that ends up feeling much more like a horror movie than a rom-com — and often, well-constructed horror movies are the more true to life of that pair of styles.

There’s an almost surprisingly straightforward guitar line that slithers its way through the various caustic noise tracks that Endon present on Boy Meets Girl that feels — in a sense — like it represents some of the core of what we might think of “love” on a surface level. The strikingly melodic guitar lines are pleasant, catchy, and even alluring.

However, they are completely immersed in crashing tidal waves of caustic noise that tear at the corners of your psyche — and themselves feel like the product of previous similar tears. The album proves an incredibly experiential work, offering a take that’s less of an explanation of its various themes and more of a generous helping of raw power. Endon lay little out explicitly for the listener to the point of the vocalist sometimes just offering wordless screams, and Boy Meets Girl¬†demands some kind of special immersion and for you as a listener to leave your preconceived notions behind.

5/5 Stars

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