Jul 27, 2011, 07:04AM

The Noise Rock Litmus Test

If you can hang—and hang, and hang, and hang some more—with the following, you should probably bookmark Forced Exposure, post-haste.

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•    Apple cores disappearing into the garbage disposal

•    The turbulent grumble of idling diesel engines

•    The entropic crackle of a television set not tuned to any signal for longer than a few seconds

•    Other people’s music or ringtones sneaking from ear buds or stray sonics from open-air restaurant/bar PA systems as experienced from a disadvantageous remove or a moving vehicle, thereby rendering said sounds suitably alien, intriguingly unfamiliar, and convincingly desirable

•    The context-obliterating roar of leaf blowers

•    The harsh, ominous buzz of parking-lot lights, after sundown

•    Muskrats in heat

•    Buckethead, generally

•    Chewed-to-the-quick nails on chalkboards

•    Accidentally or not-so-accidentally dropped dishes shattering

•    The greedily insatiable vroom of ancient vacuum cleaners

•    The lulling hum of airport people-movers and mall escalators

•    The sharp, piercing beep of cheap wake-up alarm clocks

•    Air-raid sirens, or recordings of air-raid sirens that you find yourself revisiting for no apparent reason

•    Obliviously off-key whistling jags in enclosed spaces that result in a bracing echo

•    The Darth Vader-reminiscent rasp of microphones used by aged smokers who, while they no longer possess tracheas, still have a great deal to say

•    The combat-zone shudder and thump of jackhammers and other jarring sounds that imply the onward march of progress

•    Radio static, for any stretch of time longer than 20 seconds

•    Asylum ambiance, or no-fi field recordings from your local Denny’s

•    That rattling grind that makes it seem like wasps have established a base of operations within your air conditioning system, but really just means that your dust filter was inserted improperly or that your air conditioning system is so old

•    Sudden expressions of physical suffering that are difficult to peg as producible by another living creature but which you instinctually know were produced by another living creature, somehow

•    Loose belts snapping and flapping under the hood

•    Tiny Tim’s singing voice


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