BOSTON USA "If we're a city, there should be dozens and dozens of labels and not only that, but labels trying to do stuff on a national scale," says Creaturos drummer Noah Bond (left, with Joseph Marrett and Spenser Gralla).
Boston is a city built on pride. Our music, our sports, our accents: whatever it is, good or bad, it is ours. But it is in that pride that Boston music has built an insular tendency toward thriving within the scene as an end in itself. And though this has led to a strong community, it leaves the question: where to from here?
Creaturos, playing Monday night at Charlie's Kitchen in Harvard Square, have no delusions of grandeur in terms of altering the system — they even admit to a relative sense of belonging. But like a lot of folks in Boston music today, they want to see the city outside of itself. And although they fully intend to continue a tradition born of the sweat and blood of basements, their plan is one of action: create music, release records, start a label.
Creaturos is guitarist Spenser Gralla and drummer Noah Bond, formerly of DOOMSTAR!, freshly joined by bassist Joseph Marrett, formerly of Ketman. If you've been to a club in Somerville/Cambridge at some time in the past several years, chances are you've seen one of the three perform. Their previous projects were pure in their urgency, abrasive in their edge, visceral in their attack; DOOMSTAR!'s overdriven pop structures versus Ketman's surf-rock post-rock. "The three of us coming together," says Bond over beers in East Cambridge, "for me, there was a conscious effort not to overthink what we were doing and rather create on impulse."
Last month the group released a 14-minute, five-song psych-odyssey of continuous rock and roll stitched together with an array of distorted string samples. The band says that as soon as they have proper songs recorded, this demo will disappear forever, but already Creaturos are creating a more dynamic relationship among their varied styles. Like looking at their collective past through a dirty lens, you can hear elements of Chuck Berry bounced through a Big Muff, bits of Crazy Horse stapled to breakneck drumbeats.All the while, Gralla demonstrates a fine hold on his once-manicapproach and guides the record through the storm to a lullaby of receding samples.
"We had roughly 10 songs, but there was never a consensus on what type of release there'd be," says Gralla about the demo recording, which was limited to 20 copies, created DIY with CD slip cases covered in fake fur and an eyeball drawn in the center. "So that was like a small art project that I took on myself one afternoon." It sold out at their first show.
But with their music residing mostly in the aether, and a full-length planned for an indefinite release, the group is turning to the community as a propellant. They plan to treat pRIMORDIAL sOUNDS, their monthly showcase at the Middlesex Lounge in Cambridge, as its own label. In the coming months, they'll launch the project with a 7-inch from Boston psych-outfit Fedavees (which also features Bond), with more planned for the future.