Every 30 or 40 or 500 years, the DNA of culture itself emerges from the translucent blackness of the not-so-shallow underground and produces a band unlike any other. The Snake Pit Ninjas ARE that band. Hearing their music for the first time, you want to walk away, but then it’s too late; now you start to wonder what makes this music so deeply arresting. You wonder why you are dancing against your will, and you wonder why every other sound you’ve ever heard suddenly sounds like the insignificant prologue to a moment you’re experiencing in the present tense.
When you attend a Snake Pit Ninjas show, by the third song there is nothing left in your life; everything is gone, crushed into a beatific sonic wasteland you never want to escape. This, more than anything else imaginable, is the manifestation of artistic truth…a truer kind of truth…the only kind of truth that cannot lie, even with the cold steel of a .357 revolver jammed inside its wet mouth, truculently demanding a random falsehood.
Welcome to the work-a-day world of the Snake Pit Ninjas. Like a hydro-electric Mothra rising from the ashes of an African village burned to the ground by post-rock minotaurs, the music of the Snake Pit Ninjas will literally make you the happiest person who has never lived.
The Snake Pit Ninjas reconstruct influences as diverse as Yes, Vampire Weekend, The Fall, Ravi Shankur, 10 cc, The Orbital, Ian Hammer, the second act of The Wizard of Oz, and the final pages of Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom. “We don’t need the middlebrow to dig our music,” says Lex, “We write for the fringes – the very, very rich and the very, very poor. That’s the audience we relate to, and that’s who our songs are about.”
This music doesn’t directly threaten the status quo, but it certainly makes the status quo nervous. It’s not on par with hearing the Velvet Underground in the summer of 1965, but it’s probably like hearing the Velvet Underground in the winter of 1966. Can the Snake Pit Ninjas become the Carolina’s U2? Sure, maybe. But maybe not. There might be too much at stake (and too many people in the way). Still, one listen to the band will irrefutably prove the only thing you really need to know: The Snake Pit Ninjas make music. And in today’s world, that’s almost all that matters.