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Olympic Downpour

Broken Water is a product of Northwestern weather: cultural, musical, political and alluvial, rooster-vanes swinging in the storm. “Our music is something to turn to in the midst of it all,” says drummer/vocalist Kanako Pooknyw, who pounds through skin-rooves like a horizontal hailstorm. Heavily influenced by the grungy Olympic underground of the 1980s and ‘90s, Broken Water swells in the melodic breakdowns as much as it surges through dammed distortion.  Guitarist Jon Hanna sandpapers and scours with the drip-drop pop of Pooknyw and Abigail Ingram’s (bass) maelstrom rhythms. 

West Coast touring on the strength of the recently self-released Peripheral Star EP and the forthcoming (May 29) debut long-play on Seattle-based Hardly Art record label, Tempest is set to saturate the sonic sponge. Tracks like “Drown” and “Underground” show Broken Water raging through the subterranean passages of its predecessors.

“When I see our structure, and economy and human needs, the social fabric fraying, with more chaos and less sanity and safety,” says Pooknyw, “I’m motivated to make music against that.”

“This band,” she says, “is an immediate approach to that.”

Like a punk Prospero, antagonized Ariel and clanging, growling Caliban, Broken Water’s storm plumbs the depths of the eclectic Northwest and finds springs instead of tar.

Broken Water plays with the Groundblooms 9 pm Sunday, June 3, at Wandering Goat; donations suggested.