Matt Parmenter - Medic
The Record That Changed My Life - SPK -- "Slogun"
I was 14 years old in a college town in Michigan, hanging out in the dirty, smelly one-room apartment of a clinically insane friend, with a Sisters of Mercy subway poster on the wall and a gallon bottle of cheap(est) vodka to share when I was introduced to one song that changed my perception of music forever.
It wasn't even a whole album. The song was "Slogun" by SPK, a band name that stood for something different with every release. When I was about 12 years old I found myself on an obsessive mission to find something that sounded completely new. Nothing really blew my mind until I heard that grinding tape loop, the distorted recording of fuzzed-out synth and the mad screaming energy of a some crazed guy using what sounds like five dollars' worth of microphone and 20 years' worth of anger to belt out inane, contradictory lyrics along the lines of "Kill kill kill for mental health/Bomb bomb bomb for inner peace!" I remember thinking almost immediately, "That's it! That's the sound!" In the years after that I discovered Front 242, Thrill Kill Kult, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails and many more and learned that the genre I was obsessed with was called Industrial. As a result of that song I decided to live in Chicago, recorded dozens of electronic-based songs and continue to play with noise as music, using everything from synths to circuit-bent children's toys to lighters and ratcheting screwdrivers. I would like to say to Graeme Revell and all involved in SPK -- thank you for permanently twisting my impressionable mind!
MEDIC (medicsound.com) plays Saturday with The Terrors at the Holy Grail.