3hree Things: On Audio Warfare And Exacting Revenge On Noisy Neighbors

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Watch out for 3hree Things every Tuesday, where Riley Breckenridge, drummer of Orange County's favorite local alt-rock band Thrice, gives his take on life in Southern California as an OC native.

A few nights ago, while enjoying the extra hour of sleep afforded to us by daylight losings time, the lady and I were awoken at two in the morning by the mind-numbing pulse of a 909 (the synthesized kick drum, not the area code) featured in a solid hour's worth of an entirely shitty mix of trance music blaring from our neighbor's stereo.

As a strident non-fan of styles of music that you'd most likely hear pouring out of the dropped top of some hypermetrosexual dickneck's convertible BMW, or on the off chance that you were drugged and taken to a rave against your will, I lay in bed seething, plotting my revenge*.  
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We've all had noisy neighbors in some shape or form. If it's not someone playing something  at an unacceptable hour that sounds like a stuttering robot playing with a broken Speak & Spell while a Nelly Furtado record skips in the background, it's the guy that decides that 2 a..m. is the right time to finally hang his extensive collection of framed paintings, or the overzealous couple that is practicing making babies and wants everyone to know just how good they're getting, or the domestic dispute that starts as a shouting match and ends up sounding like a knife fight at a door slamming and cookware throwing contest. Regardless of shape or form, the unifying theme here is that it sucks, and it's an unfortunate reality that we've all either dealt with or will have to deal with at some point.

Coincidentally, the morning after the neighbor's unwarranted audio attack, a friend of mine tweeted that his neighbors had taken the liberty of playing Counting Crows at seven that morning, and that he was planning vengeance by blasting Immortal at 3 a.m. That got me thinking about what songs I currently have in my arsenal that could be used in retaliation against my neighbor.

Here's the best I've got (and lest it seem the contrary, I must say that I love all three of these songs and the bands that wrote them.)

1) Meshuggah, "Bleed"


This is what I imagine it might sound like if you were hit by a freight train and then dragged beneath said freight train for seven and a half minutes while an angry demon screamed in your ear. It's brutal and unrelenting. With the proper subwoofers you could probably make your neighbors think "The Big One" is happening.


2) Slayer, "Angel Of Death"


This is a classic. While the quality of the recording might not be sufficient enough to make your neighbor fear that the apocalypse is nigh, Tom Araya's shriek at the 19-second mark, when played at the proper volume is enough to make even the most unflappable of neighbors pee themselves a little. If Araya's blood curdling scream doesn't do the trick, just loop Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman's solo at the 3:35 mark for a half an hour or so, lock your windows and doors, and go for a walk.


3) Converge, "Heaven In Her Arms"


I suppose I could have chosen just about any Converge track to use here, but for the sake of the format of 3hree Things, I had to settle on one. (Their entire discography could very easily be pulled into an iTunes playlist, played as loud as your stereo can handle, and provide a phenomenal aural assault.) Nobody does pissed off metal/hardcore better than Converge, and "Heaven In Her Arms" sounds like Godzilla and King Kong trying to kill each other while they decimate a city.

Unfortunately, the noisy neighbor problem is here to stay and we considerate folk will have to deal with them for the rest of our lives, so let's use the comments here to spread a wealth of audio counterpunches. Show us what you've got, readers.

*I did not, and will not retaliate (because I am a colossal wuss.)
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