New Audio: Introducing Synthetic ID and Their Post-Modern Ode to Obsession and Neurosis


With the release of “Apertures” through 1-2-3-4 Go! Records, a self-titled EP through Cut The Cord That . . . Records and the “Escapement” 7 inch, along with what’s been described as a “head-turning” live show, San Francisco, CA-based post-punk quartet Synthetic ID — comprised of Nic Lang, Jake Dudley, and siblings Will and Paul Lucich — have developed a rapidly growing local and national profile, which caught the attention of Jim Dwyer, frontman of Thee Oh Sees and label head of Castle Face Records, who invited the band to play at Castle Face Records’ SF Holiday benefit show a few years ago. And as the story goes, the members of the band managed to keep in touch with Dwyer after his relocation to Los Angeles.

The San Francisco, CA post-punk quartet’s full-length debut Impulses  is slated for an April 22 release through Castle Face. Produced by Phil Manley, best known for his work with Trans Am and Life Coach, the album was recorded during one day at EL Studio and as you’ll hear from the album’s first single “Ciphers,” the material possesses the tense, urgency of the desperate and obsessively neurotic. Sonically, the band pairs slashing and angular guitar chords, propulsive four-on-the-floor-like drumming and a and throbbing bass line with the song’s minimalist shouted lyrics. In some way, sonically speaking the song sounds as though it draws from The Stooges, Gang of Four, Wire and  A Frames and others — in particular, I think of Gang of Four’s “Not Great Men,” and “At Home He’s A Tourist,” Wire’s “Three Girl Rhumba” and “Dot Dash,” The Stooges’ “1969” and “I Wanna Be Your Dog”  A Frames “nobot” and others. And much like those songs sonically and lyrically speaking, “Ciphers”captures and evokes a deeply post-modern sensation — that feeling that you’re somehow absolutely incapable of changing a ridiculous and dangerous repetitive cycle of emotions, thoughts and actions that you can only dimly comprehend; worse yet that you inexplicably feel drawn to compulsive thinking and actions and repetitive thoughts — to the point of obsession. It gives the song an unbridled, unresolved and desperate frustration that’s palpable and lingering.