Formed in the downtown late 80s New York scene which threw up the likes of Pussy Galore, Cop Shoot Cop and Boss Hog, Unsane underwent drug deaths and departures before arriving at the prime lineup of singer-guitarist Chris Spencer, bassist Dave Curran and former Foetus and Swans drummer Vinny Signorelli, recording their landmark third album Scattered, Smothered and Covered (1995) for the independent Amphetamine Reptile label.
Crucially, producer Tim Mac managed to harness the trio’s overdriven, minor-key noise assaults into a seething cauldron of compacted malevolent power, with lead track Scrape breaking through to MTV and the album subsequently held as a defining noise milestone.
Unsane’s demonic barrage of juggernaut riffs, rusty chain bass, tortured howls and behemoth drums is perfect for those craving noise with raging gutter attitude, suitably nodding at Motörhead‘s attack on Blame Me and Can’t See.
While recording their next album, Occupational Hazard, Spencer was brutally attacked by street thugs in Vienna, Austria, and left for dead in the street. After emergency surgery, he returned to the touring arena.
Unsane disbanded in 2000 but returned a few years later with Blood Run (2005).