Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Sound engineering by Mike Gentry
The world seems to move along slower than normal for Dinosaur Jr., all the times when it's not barreling down on it with its gargantuan-sized distortion monster. All other times, when the full stacks are sitting around just panting from all of the previous exertion, but not actually working and bleeding their feedback fire, are disqualified from excitement ever having much of an impact on them. It's just an uninterrupted drag until the ears and the components of the body can feel themselves from the inside out and constantly, lightly touching some form of a claustrophobic cocoon of fiberglass insulation that is the encompassing sound that the legendary Amherst, Mass., band of men have created for decades. All other times feel as if they're confusing combinations of awkward ambivalence and disinterest, as if there's nothing outside that hot and heavy blasts that come at their own hands that could ever hold the attention of J Mascis, Lou Barlow or Murph. The volume and the murky logging of their music are the be all and end all of what they're into pursuing and then there's not much else. All three of the still-getting-along-from-all-we-can-tell members cut distinct figures on their own as recognizable members of a band that has influenced countless noise-a-holics and fuzz aficionados across the world. Mascis, who was ever-present this past March at the SXSW festival, guest shredding on countless sets as well as playing a tireless series of Dino shows over the course of a week, has his signature mane of silver hair - a thick and sleek shag that Mine That Bird would be proud of when aging sets in and he's send off to stud. He's got his color affiliation and fixation with purple and he moves and talks with an amble all his own, shuffling like molasses. He arrived at the studio a few months back, while the band was passing through the Midwest, spooning through a Styrofoam bowl of oatmeal, as it was just a shade past breakfast time. He slowly made his way through the lukewarm mixture before the group dug into four old songs, which held onto a similar feel - the way Dinosaur Jr. feels when they each individually open up their window shades in the morning, letting in whatever's on the other side, overcast gloom or some blush of sunshine. It's not necessarily calm and groggy, but more of the already slightly amped up, but easing into it condition. It's got the temperament of slackerville, but there seems to be good reason for it. It' more just that Mascis, Barlow and Murph are chill with the approach, not lazy with it. They have honed their paradise settings and the band's new album "Farm," is another installation of the paralyzing ability of the group's sheer magnitude, a devastating display of rumbling and hissing, of blaring and burning. It's an example of three guys once again finding themselves getting most interested in making a loud and meaningful racket, something that will send the skin wobbling like the most overwhelming shivers. And it's all that they can bother themselves to care about - this continuing yearning for loud grandiosity, their kind of beauty. Everything else is just scenery passing them by, flitting by like silence and who gives a shit about silence, they'd ask bluntly. And who gives a shit about keeping anything tame?
Dinosaur Jr. Official Site