Influential indie musician Jason Noble, of Rodan, Rachel’s and Shipping News, has died of cancer in Bethesda, Maryland, his family said online. He was 40. Noble was diagnosed in 2009 with synovial sarcoma, a rare form of cancer that affects the body’s soft tissue.
A champion of the Louisville, Kentucky, music scene, Noble was the chief vocalist and guitarist in Rodan, which formed in 1992. With a dynamic, intricate art-punk sound, Rodan and fellow Louisville group Slint deeply influenced the sound of post-hardcore in the Nineties. Rodan released one album, 1994’s Rusty, before disbanding the following year.
After Rodan, Noble helped found Rachel’s, which blended orchestral elements including viola, cello, horns and piano with guitars, electric bass and other more traditional rock instruments. The group released five studio albums, including their last, Systems/Layers, in 2003. Noble also re-teamed with Rodan guitarist Jeff Mueller as Shipping News, recording four albums under the moniker.
Noble will be cremated in Maryland this week, and relatives plan to hold a “larger gathering to celebrate Jason’s life” the next few weeks. For more information, visit Jason Noble’s CaringBridge.org website.