Friday 18 Apr

Dustin Prinz - Eleven

Few musicians take the time to master their instrument in the way that Oklahoma City singer-songwriter Dustin Prinz has; he’s a guitar virtuoso in every sense of the word, and Eleven gives him the chance to show just how far he can push that skill.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Horse Thief – Fear in Bliss

Listening to Horse Thief’s previous release — the haphazardly melodramatic Grow Deep, Grow Wild — felt like a chore. Whatever potential the Oklahoma City folk-pop act demonstrated on the EP was obscured behind a formulaic, contrived and ultimately hollow cloud. But it at least offered a glimmer of promise for a band consisting of, frankly, five pretty talented dudes. Critics saw it; the band’s management saw it; its current label, Bella Union, saw it; and its increasingly fervid fan base saw it.
04/08/2014 | Comments 0

Colourmusic — May You Marry Rich

There’s always a sense of danger when debuting songs in a live setting and playing them well. Without having heard the studio versions, expectations are set according to the live incarnations. But capturing the breadth of free-flowing atmosphere and sheer volume on a disc, vinyl or digital file isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially for a band as vociferous as Colourmusic.
04/01/2014 | Comments 0

Em and the MotherSuperiors — Churches into Theaters

As titles go, Churches into Theaters is an apt descriptor for the debut album from Oklahoma City rockers Em and the MotherSuperiors. It’s a reverential record, one that shares the gospel of classic rock, blues and soul but embraces the need to refashion it for modern times, channeling The Dead Weather, Grace Potter and Cage the Elephant along the way.
03/25/2014 | Comments 0

Rachel Brashear — Revolution

Rachel Brashear’s second EP, Revolution, starts with a kick to the shins.
03/18/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Brush with noise

Brush with noise

All Paintscratcher wants is for Oklahoma City to take a whiff of its hardcore coat.

Joshua Boydston May 2nd, 2012

Paintscratcher with Weekend Nachos, Dead in the Dirt and Viduus
8 p.m. Friday
The Conservatory
8911 N. Western

Ross Adams

James Hammontree, singer/guitarist for Paintscratcher, took a bad habit and twisted it into the perfect name for his then-fledging, Oklahoma City-based hardcore group.

“The thing I used to do when I was nervous was scratch the paint of a windowsill furiously fast. I thought, ‘That’s a pretty good name for how I want the attitude of the band to feel,’” he said. “I try to keep everything as visceral, vague and ambiguous as possible so people can get their own feeling for it, but it definitely stemmed out of nervous habits and wanting the music to feel like the explosion of nerves everyone has at some point in their lives.”

Hammontree and bandmates Jamie Schnetzler (guitar) and Colin Ferguson (drums) had played in metro hardcore acts before joining in 2010.

“It seems like for a while, hardcore got popular around here and turned into a widely known thing, but it was more metal-tinged. There was less of an old-school punk perspective and more ’80s-metal side to it,” Hammontree said. “I just wanted to play hardcore that was based in punk and noise … less of a tough and intimidating mood, rather a mysterious and surreal attitude to it. I’m not trying to scare anyone; I want to bring an emotion different than wanting to fight.”

Two years of experience have found Paintscratcher as something of a thinking man’s hardcore band, bringing into the fold post-punk heavyweights Gang of Four and Wire, along with modern noise acts like Lightning Bolt.

“If you can juxtapose an outside influence with a certain style of music you are doing, you might have a chance at coming up with something creative,” Hammontree said.

The group recently released a split 7-inch with like-minded Oklahoma act Chud and wants to do another in the coming months. The songs — often clocking in at two minutes or less — demand a listen, all while accommodating ever-shortening attention spans.

“You can reach a higher level of intensity when you make something shorter. To give the most energy you can, it’s kind of got to come in a short burst,” he said. “I work the songs in a fashion that I can only physically play some of those songs for that long. There’s a certain intensity that way. When it’s passing through time so fast, it has a level of importance, because it’s going to end really soon.”

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