Northern Spy Records
Brooklyn-based Extra Life have challenged various underground circles with their dark, unclassifiable fusion of Experimental, Pop, Industrial, Prog, Classical and even Medieval aesthetics. The band’s dramatic sound, labeled by some as “Plague Pop”, has been called everything from “genius” to “pretentious” to “religious”. Extra Life was formed in 2007 by singer/keyboardist Charlie Looker after his departure from influential noise-chamber cult Zs and his brief stints with Dirty Projectors and Dax Riggs. After some lineup changes, the band gelled as a trio with guitarist/violinist producer Caley Monahon-Ward (of Snowblink) and drummer Nick Podgurski (of Feast of the Epiphany).
Extra Life’s first two albums Secular Works (Planaria 2008) and Made Flesh (LOAF 2010) were monoliths of Byzantine guitar work and operatic overflow, which received wide critical acclaim and landed on numerous year-end Best Of and Strangest Of lists. The limited edition EP Ripped Heart (Last Things 2011) showed Extra Life at their most concise, in a synth-heavy yet perversely un-danceable take on Pop music. Surrounding these releases were vinyl split singles with Parenthetical Girls, Nat Baldwin and Larkin Grimm, and the remix EP Splayed Flesh (Sockets/Planaria 2010), featuring Justin Broadrick and Tyondai Braxton.
Extra Life has toured the US and Europe extensively, performing at festivals including Primavera Sound (Barcelona), Kilbi (Switzerland), Villette Sonique (France) and Moers Jazz (Germany), and sharing bills with Sonic Youth, Deerhoof, Sunn 0))), Owen Pallett, Xiu Xiu, Deerhunter, Lightning Bolt and Liturgy. By confronting both the so-called Indie world and the experimental noise underground which birthed them, Extra Life has built a devout international following of kids who refuse to take the easy way out.
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