Thurston and Loren fearlessly dive into a hot, dark pool and enter a world of surging sound and faint lights. They can't see each other. They can only hear each others' searing notes in the heat. But it is enough to take them through.
The material on The Only Way To Go Is Straight Through was compiled from two live recordings. Side A was captured at The Stone in Manhattan, where Moore and Connors performed on July 14, 2012 for the second annual Spy Music Festival (pictured above). The pair met up again on October 17, 2012 to headline Northern Spy's CMJ showcase at Public Assembly in Brooklyn (pictured below), and that mesmerizing set became Side B of this record.
"Most guitarists who improvise with Loren Connors show the man some deference. Both Jim O’Rourke and Alan Licht have tended to orbit his Venusian blues, keeping his keening figures and nocturnal atmospheres in the center; Keiji Haino showed none of the calculated ignorance he sometimes uses to keep other musicians off balance. And while Thurston Moore certainly knows how to wail, in improvised contexts he tends to take his cues from his fellow musicians, matching their energy level. But deference was not on the agenda during either of the performances that make up this LP, which Northern Spy has pressed up for Record Store Day 2013 in a run of 3000. “The Stone (2012/07/14)” opens with a display of outright savagery; Moore chases down and destroys tones with the cruel agility of a WW I fighter pilot keeping an evasive opponent in his sites, while Connors pumps in continuous streams of sound that bulge in the middle like a boa constrictor that chowed down on a collection of bowling balls. Then they shift to a less propulsive but not less aggressive mode; Moore’s distorted squall scythes around Connors’ squelchy wah-wah licks, then attacks it directly. Connors takes the blows and strikes back; if these were comic book characters, they’d be fencing with outboard motors."
- Dusted (www.dustedmagazine.com/reviews/7676