Posted September 22, 2014 by Cooper Point Journal in Arts & Entertainment

Best New Music: Naomi Punk – “Television Man”

(Captured Tracks)


Confidently jarring, meticulous and formulaic, Naomi Punk’s composition is down to a science. Consistent songwriting is what defines their sophomore album, Television Man, as the guitars punch and drive syncopated alongside anti-drumbeat drumming. The vocals yell, as if stuck in the bottom of a well, and there is certainly a heavy darkness to the album that can become bleak, yet their anthemic vocal melodies and repetitive riffs provide a pop-music glow to the negative overtones.

While the band uses many unorthodox and grating rhythmic phrases that could easily become disordered, Naomi Punk is comfortable and confident in their chaos. The rhythms may sound harsh and jarring, as the guitars claw their way through each track, but the uniform nature of the songs, in sound and structure, provide an encapsulated and complete album for the listener to digest (as Speedy Ortiz’s Sadie Bupois pointed out on the musician’s music blog, The Talkhouse). In a way, Naomi Punk tricks listeners into accepting untraditional rhythms that would otherwise be condemned as experimental or mathy. Instead, Naomi Punk re-appropriates, repurposes, and rebrands technical rhythms into punk music.

The fact that Naomi Punk hasn’t ventured far from their original sound is a common critique among reviewers, but Television Man shows the band’s progression through a unified sound, and recordings that sound crisp and refined.

All three parts—guitars, vocals, and drums—combine to create cohesive tracks, and hint at a collaborative writing process.

Currently on a 40-show tour across North America, and gearing up for a European tour, Naomi Punk is one of Olympia’s few active bands that is nationally and internationally known. Television Man, released on the Brooklyn-based record label Captured Tracks, has sparked dozens of reviews and interviews. Clearly aware of their growing popularity, the band posted a statement on their minimalistic website that reads: “THIS IS A WEBSITE FOR THE PROMULGATION OF NAOMI PUNK AS ANOTHER DEFORMED ART OBJECT IN A CRASS MARKETPLACE OF FILTH AND ROT.” Suffice it to say, the band is aware of their image. As a burgeoning band in the Internet-era, Naomi Punk couples their music with an array of responses to maintain their DIY roots, as well as their image. The band makes hand-made collages for their shows, and maintains a strong DIY aesthetic through their website

Traveling the country and spreading fast through the Internet, Naomi Punk have become ambassadors of Olympia’s music scene. Be sure to keep an eye on them.