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ALPHA STRATEGY’s eclectic “The Gurgler” crosses sonic borders with ease

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Whether you’ll like “The Gurgler” by Toronto based experimental noise rock / post punk act ALPHA STRATEGY, depends on whether you prefer your listening adventures to be playing by the rules, or trying to see where the rules can be changed. The exploratory record we’re premiering below is definitely in the latter camp.

Antena Krzyku label has it right and to the point:

“An incredible album recorded at Electrical Audio by Steve Albini and mastered by Bob Weston. Music that has no borders. You can call it post punk, you can call it noise rock or minimal and get that slight touch of The Birthday Party-like madness, and you are getting close to what it’s like.”

Alpha Strategy’s third album, The Gurgler, is set to be released on LP/CD/digital formats on August 31. The astounding offering was recorded at Electrical Audio, Studio B, March 2018, engineered and mixed by Steve Albini, mastered by Bob Weston at Chicago Mastering Services, and features artwork by Graham Lambkin.

The gurgler cover art


The title of this song references a particular winter coat that our old bass player, Ben, was wearing. The coat itself had been left out in the elements for some time prior to him commenting on it.


We started writing and recording this one at a studio in Prague during a day off on our tour last year. There were self-congratulatory remarks all around for how much progress we’d made that afternoon. We were supposed to work on the song later that week at a studio we’d booked in Subotica, Serbia, but after a pretty wild night, we made a bunch of mistakes that resulted in us and our equipment being dropped off at the wrong place in Subotica, meaning that we missed the session. We never actually finished the song until December.


We were so happy to have the recording of this particular song out of the way that we decided to do not one, but two pictures where we are all pointing at the camera. Notice how eerily similar the pictures are to each other.



This song and Save Us Neris in various ways reference time spent in Lithuania, as we’ve played a number of shows there over the years, and Rory lived there for 3 months. Lithuania has the best gas station hot dogs on the planet, and also has very large, colorful signs to promote them. Here is Rory standing in front of such a sign, while eating one of the delicious hot dogs.



We listen to a lot of absurdist prank calls by Longmont Potion Castle, both at home, and when we’re driving to shows. This song is in no way related to the man referred to as Arthur The Gargler (may he rest in peace) on LPC’s Quadrupler.


The Gurgler is the second album we’ve recorded with Steve Albini. He politely made some recommendations on the deployment of reverb for this particular song, which we went with. One of the best things about working with Steve is how he’s actively interested in helping folks make their record the best it can be, and how he offers suggestions without being troubled if some other idea is used in the end. Steve has also been playing the Safety Game for many years, and we are inclined to think that he is surely a contender for the world record in hours participated.


This is the last song we finished writing for The Gurgler. It is also the last song on the record itself.

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