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Prurient’s “Greenpoint” Is As Bleak And Beautiful As Winter In New York

The noise artist premieres a 10-minute track from his new double album.

April 17, 2015

This past winter in New York was pretty dreadful. People always say things like, "There's been worse," but when you're really truly in it, sick and freezing and slogging through slush just to get around, it's pretty impossible to imagine it ever being worse, and even harder to imagine that there's an end, that the whole idea of spring wasn't just some dream you had once. Over 10 uneasy minutes, "Greenpoint"—the latest offering from influential, shape-shifting noise artist Prurient—effectively captures the eternal-seeming bleakness of winter in the city. On the spoken-word middle section, he drudges up dark thoughts of suicide, gentrification, and alcoholism so bad you regularly wake up in the Beth Israel emergency room. The East River isn't romantic anymore, he speaks quiet and flat, his voice only a little warped, atop sleepy drones and slight electronic bristles.

According to Prurient mastermind Dominick Fernow, the lyrics were written in November of 2013, but the sonics that accompany them didn't come together until this year. "It began as an acoustic duet on 12-string guitar and ended with the Prophet 12 synthesizer," he told FADER in an email. "This song deals with my experiences, years ago, when I first came to New York City—a setting that has gone from one of alcoholism and drug addiction to waterfront development." The track appears on his new, 90-minute double album, Frozen Niagara Falls, out May 12th via Profound Lore Records.

Prurient’s “Greenpoint” Is As Bleak And Beautiful As Winter In New York