Circle X's first album -- its only full-length record, in fact, to appear until Celestial came out about a decade later -- is very much a relic of the early-'80s New York no wave sound, cut in 1981 but not released until 1983. To say this is unconventional and barely classifiable as rock is an understatement, as melody is almost totally absent. It's the sound that seems to matter more than any tune or lyric, as choppy, semi-tribal rhythms and blurry, murky distorted guitars flail away. Barely discernible, half-chanted, impressionistic, gloomy words are expelled, often with the desperate fervor of a man tearing off his shirt to escape unseen shackles. A slight echo overlaid on the vocals and instruments add to the purgatorial sense of guys trapped in a near-nightmare. This music was prescient in that records such as this would become far more common (especially in the indie rock scene) in the years to come, but it doesn't make it any easier to listen to now than it was back in the early '80s.