Torched Review – John Fryer’s Black Needle Noise ‘Social Media Disease’ Ft. Betty X


Legendary Producer John Fryer continues his Black Needle Noise journey with the single release ‘Social Media Disease’ featuring Betty X, the latest in a series of singles that have been released consistently via Bandcamp. If you’ve been following Torched Magazine for sometime, this will be a welcoming addition as we’ve been keeping you up to date with each new track from BNN. For those who are just now catching on, Fryer’s Black Needle Noise is a masterfully curated collective of many different talented singer/song writers along with John Fryer’s signature dark, moody and dreamy soundscapes.

‘Social Media Disease’, a cautionary tale of social media addiction, features the talents of Austin, TX based singer/songwriter and one time Seattle underground sweetheart Betty X. With this track, Betty’s sultry yet punky and unforgiving vocals moves swiftly and gets right up in all of our faces, forcing us to come to terms with or at least acknowledge that we all suffer from a social media addiction on some level. Johns dark and moody distorted soundscape gives this track a real edge that draws you in time and time again like the drug that social media is. It must be said, this is one of our favorite tracks by Black Needle Noise to date!



Fryer says that “I always saw this as a ‘Post Punk Distorted Dream Pop’ song and it needed a little bit of aggro in the vocals. I thought Betty X would be perfect for this and, as you can hear, she is.” Betty X meanwhile says that, “The fast-paced techno beats served as the perfect vehicle for a diatribe on America’s obsession with social media, technology, and fame. It’s a cautionary tale of being self-absorbed with these things. It’s an unhealthy addiction… a social media disease.” (Ghettoblaster)

Salon Betty was Betty X’s first musical endeavor in 1994 that would launch her into the history books as pioneering the art punk/new wave/ punk cabaret scene in Seattle. She would later relocate to Austin, TX and move on as a solo artist known for her hard rocking social commentary. Her long awaited 6th studio album was recently released entitled ‘Bad Juju’ which is more of a swanky blues noir album that brings her music full circle, taking listeners down eerie moonlit desert highways and through swampy recesses found only in nightmares.


BettXTMPhoto by Nathan Kaylor


John Fryer is a multi-platinum selling record producer and musician. Starting in 1980 at London’s Blackwing Studios, he worked for some of the most prestigious indie labels at the time like 4AD, Mute, and Rough Trade. He has produced and worked with many influential artists for which the list is both extensive and impressive including; Cocteau Twins, Depeche Mode, Wire, NIN and Love And Rockets. John was also a long standing member of Ivo Watts-Russell’s ‘ This Mortal Coil and has had his own bands over the years including; DarkDriveClinic, Muricidae, Silver Ghost Shimmer and now Black Needle Noise.

John Fryer’s Black Needle Noise is a 50/50 partnership between Fryer and many different talented singer/songwriters, including Attasalina, Mimi Page,ZiaLand,Omniflux, JarboeBetsy Martin, Andrea Kerr, Ledfoot, Spectra Paris,Jennie Vee, Ana Breton, Kendra FrostElena Alice FossiAntic Clay, Andreas ElvenesBill LeebSivert HøyemFakebaMadame ur y sus Hombres, Beca and Betty X.



Photo: Morten Ryming


Social Media Disease

The lights are on but you’re just too far away

I’m right here don’t wanna watch it all decay

Black mirrors shining in your vacant eyes

You’re staring down the barrel of your own demise


Off Grid, Offline, Time to Decide, Unplugged, Offline

Social Suicide


“Likes”, clicks, spotlight

“Follow Me” limelight

This is nothing you would ever try to understand

You gawk and stare at all the faces in this “Wonderland”.

(melodic, loud, slightly anthemic but fast)


You shit out selfies like

A backstage whore

15 minutes with no encore

Narcissist slaves

Obsessed with fame

Now we’re all the same


Unplugged, Untied, Time to Decide, Off grid, Offline

Social Suicide


You crave the spotlight

Post with no contrite

Obsessed with the limelight

Brag with no respite


Off grid, I’ve died, Time to Decide, Unplugged, Untied,

Time to Decide


“Likes”, clicks, spotlight

“Follow Me” limelight


This is nothing you would ever try to understand

You’re just a zombie in this dystopic wasteland


They lie like filthy

fucking thieves

Making sure we’re

On our knees


Inflicted with this

Social Media



Off grid, Offline, Social Suicide, Unplugged, Offline,

Social Suicide


Off grid, Offline, I’ve died, I’ve died, Unplugged, Untied

Social Suicide


Vocals & Lyrics by Betty X



Keep up with Betty X

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube | Spotify

Keep up with Black Needle Noise / John Fryer

Facebook BNN| Facebook John Fryer | Bandcamp| YouTube| Instagram

Twitter |  iTunes

Tagged with: