NoNoNo (JPN)
Live fast


4.0
excellent

Review

by Johnny[Well] STAFF
November 5th, 2019 | 11 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: How fast is 'fast'?

I love it when groups find the kind of succinct, straightforward names for their albums that, aptly or not, fit so perfectly that you cannot imagine them being called anything else. Think Melt-Banana’s Fetch, Hop Along’s Get Disowned and the Dillinger Escape Plan’s Calculating Infinity: all of these titles chime so neatly with a sense of cognition that extends with huge consistency and satisfaction by their musical substance. NoNoNo’s Live Fast is another one of these auspiciously named albums that enjoy an appropriate and holistic relationship between their nomenclature and sonic quality - and by ‘appropriate’, I mean that this is a fast ’n’ furious hardcore EP played at lightspeed, sung in unintelligible Japanese, and starting and ending within the runtime of your average Tool song; this album is every inch the reckless, uncompromising intensity and blink-and-you-missed-it concision required for the impression that you have indeed lived fast for a short while (at the exact rate of one song-per-minute).

Operating as a three-piece, NoNoNo find a very healthy middle ground between kicking off the kind of chaotic energy that releases like this live and die by, while keeping their performances tight enough to pull off the whiplash changes of pace needed to keep records like this on their toes (not to mention their listeners). The accentuation and precision of the latter elements are greatly boosted by excellent production, which is altogether an improvement on their previous effort, Cutting Edge; Live Fast steps away from that release’s muddy, demo-ish quality into sharper tones and a clearer mix. That’s not to say the EP sounds polished (boring!): vocalist/guitarist Hisane has a way of stirring the arrangement up into a battery-acid churn of overdrive and spamming out syllables like a honey badger on the losing end of a rough argument, all of which scans as an invigorating overload. However, the mix is balanced in a way that copes with this and renders the bass and drum tracks entirely distinct for any listeners minded to scrutinise the album beyond Hisane’s unapologetically focal placement. This allows for moments such as, for instance, the one-bar bass fill around twenty seconds into Hypocrites and the shifts between bombastic snare blasts and short-lived grooves that run through the same track to land with the focus and intensity they deserve, while the guitarless Pissed off sounds no less incensed than its more distorted counterparts. The lurching riffs of the fantastic No end in sight, meanwhile, sound like a band in tune with the same brand of chaos, rather than the collective mess in which weaker production might have landed these tracks.

There’s only so much more that be added for an 8-minute hardcore EP: Live Fast plays things intense and relentless and is as prepared to violate the listener’s adrenaline levels as it is to respect their attention span. Some might make noises over such a decisively frenetic band being female-fronted, but these would be misplaced reflections of the stale novelty retained by the involvement of women in heavier genres in the Anglosphere than anything else. Gender parity in this scene has long since been normalised in Japan (at least on a creative level) and it is somewhat telling that while we now remember our own riot grrrl movement first and foremost as an important part of 90s political history, it is ultimately a prevailing focus on musical content and quality that shapes our attitude towards the line of Shounen Knifes, Bleach03s, Midoris and (most recently) Otoboke Beavers that have, to a certain degree, ‘made it’ as internationally recognised champions of J-punk (or so I would argue). Putting that aside, NoNoNo are hardly likely to be the next cult hit to appear in that line; their flash in a pan songwriting and uncontroversial upholding of hardcore convention both seem destined for a comfortable spot in the underground, but this spot is well-earned and I look forward to hearing any future hell they have to raise.




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user ratings (3)
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
November 5th 2019


26756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.9

Bandcamp: https://nonono7.bandcamp.com

Cheers to Sandwich for getting me on this, really fun stuff. Recommended use of anyone's 8 minutes!

Digging: Sweet Trip - You Will Never Know Why

SandwichBubble
November 5th 2019


11990 Comments


Well alright then, glad you dug it!

Uzumaki
November 5th 2019


2503 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice write-up; finding it mirthful that this is only 8 minutes long. Will check once I have a hot minute (or 8).

Digging: Mo?some Tonebender - Drive

Aberf
November 6th 2019


3215 Comments


How can I have the time in my life to check an 8 minutes long EP? Are you out of your mind? Damn Milleneals

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
November 6th 2019


26756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.9

I hate your attention span and I want you all to suffer

Aberf
November 6th 2019


3215 Comments


me writing a review for 8-minute long ep:

Yo, this is kickass, the music goes boom and pow. Guitar is sick, drum is sick, and bass is also sick. so sickass. Please listen ty.

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
November 6th 2019


26756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.9

It was a dull train ride ngl

Uzumaki
November 6th 2019


2503 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fair enough.

Uzumaki
November 6th 2019


2503 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

OK, so this was actually good; it doesn't help that I (unironically) listened to Nurse before this, so I was mentally prepared for this.







I wonder if they tour with Otoboke Beaver?

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
November 11th 2019


26756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.9

Lmao I'm getting a lot of surprise from that comment. They'd go down a storm with Otoboke Beaver, but weirdly I recently rediscovered the band they (Beaver) actually do play with - they're a Korean dream pop group called Say Sue Me that I flat out forgot existed despite seeing them open and cursively checking them before the show. Their album is dec though, amazing opener

Uzumaki
November 12th 2019


2503 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

That name does ring a few bells; that or the bats in my belfry are waking up. I’ll have to skim through my music library and see if I have them.



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