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SQ



East Coast experimental duo SQ (aka SpeedQueen) plumbs the dark, ugly depths of human consciousness with pulsing, brooding dronescapes that sound like everything you've ever been afraid of. This stuff could be the soundtrack to a nightmare -- or a descent into Dante's hell, where infernal monsters roar as they torture half-human personages, eliciting inhuman unrecognizable sounds. Yet for all the music's darkness -- maybe because of it -- there's something fascinating and almost beautiful about the way SQ uses their reverb machines and delay pedals to coax these groaning, seemingly endless sounds from their guitars. Copious guitar feedback, nerve-wracking lo-fi percussion, and not-quite-comprehensible wailing vocal parts serve to augment the never-ending drone. This is an aural landscape totally unlike anything you're used to.

Dronologists Marc Faris and Joe Tunis have been at it since 1995, when they performed improv at an art installation. A shared interest in hypnotic drone, dark textures, and tortured rhythm led to an ongoing collaboration under the name SQ. Despite the fact that Faris lives in Durham, North Carolina and Tunis in Rochester, New York, SQ has continued to record and play live shows whenever possible. The duo's output, all on Carbon Records includes several compilation tracks, a cassette, a split 12-inch (with Quadrafacet), and a pair of full-length CDs, including 1999's monosite, an excerpt of which is featured here.