New Post Punk: Wives + Masses + Infinite Void + TOL + Mere Women

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Gather round and sulk at the latest, greatest and darkest from around Aus:

Wives – Whipping Boy EP

Canberra’s Wives put out an excellent record on NO PATIENCE last year that felt really unfortunately ignored. It’s phenomenally dark and direct stuff, and if you’ve got a chance, I recommend you give it a go.

However, being the prolific punks they are, Wives have already followed up on last year’s record with another EP of material. It’s twitchy stuff – synths that emerge from nowhere, teeth bared; guitars that scratch and bleed. It’s a simple reminder that Wives are a band that you need in your life.

Plus if that isn’t enough, there are remixes on the EP from ASPS and the forever-intriguing Enderie Nuatal.

Make sure ya catch Wives playing Blackwire Records on the 11th, with support from Diecut, Marcus Whale and Cat Heaven.

Masses – Masses

For those that dug Gold Class but wished they had a bit more crunch need to get familiar with Masses. It’s goth-ridden post-punk that lashes with intensity, a huge scaly beast that singes your hair with every song.

There are delicate moments, sure, but when Masses lean in, they put your attention in a strangehold. Take “Crosses”, “Moloch” or “Paranoid” – these are all songs that drive with the same bloody wrath as Bauhaus – unrelenting and a perfect soundtrack to this week’s excorcism.

Infinite Void – Face in the Window

As soon as the bass riff kicks in for this, it becomes immediately obvious that this is gonna be a gud ‘un. Infinite Void are essentially the White Walkers of Melbourne – terrifying, beautiful and absolutely freezing. “Face in the Window” is liquid nitrogen that builds into a torrential downpour of icy sheets of guitar, hurtling with the singular vision of outdoing the Ice Age. If you feel like sinking into the equivalent of a sink hole in the Arctic, do yourself a favour and chuck this on.

TOL – Survive

TOL fall towards the latter half of the post-punk equation, armed with the kind of seething, sharp riffs that Steen Spielberg wishes he could’ve used to line the cavernous face hole of Jaws. Buried under a caked layer of feedback, TOL plunge and dive with abandon, as ferocious as they are loud. Put this into your ears and feel your head go through a similar transformation as the bald guy with glasses in Scanners.

Plus, this came out on NOPATIENCE and the band features members of LAKES, Spite House and ZOND – surely that’s enough of an indication that TOL are an essential band.

Mere Women – Numb

This song came out fucking ages ago and I never got around to having a yarn about it. Better late than never, right?

Anyway, “Numb” is another gem from one of Sydney’s finest and most underrated. Mere Women are one of the most interesting bands going around this shitty town at the moment, and if ever the opportunity arises for you to go and see them, DO NOT FUCKING HESITATE!

 

 

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Album Review: Rule of Thirds – Rule of Thirds

Adelaide has always been a fixture of fantastic music that thrives on being rejected by the mainstream. From Wireheads to Bitch Prefect to Blood Plastic, if you want something that blossoms in the dark, then unleash your inner horticulture specialist, and dive into the great music that our Southern cousins have to offer.

Case in point are the deplorable sounds of Rule of Thirds. This trio must lead the lives of the Abominable Snowman/Yeti. Call it what you want, but they are freezing and terrifying. Their sound is a blizzard of gothic horror, churning, machine-laden vocals growling and alluring vocals driven along by lurching bass lines. Each second is colder and more treacherous than the one that precedes it, leaping into a blizzard of blocky, tortured goth rock.

The stuff here is powerful, there’s no doubt about that. When Rule of Thirds get evil, they get real good.  A song like “Fingerprints”, with its howling chorus that paws at the conscience, is as hard to resist as a schoolboy is to a priest. Bowing down with a Cure-esque riff that snarls and terrorises like a pit bull would outside a junkyard. There’s plenty of goodies behind that chain-link fence, oozing cool riffs that pulsate and glow, but those vocals won’t let you anywhere near. Stick a pinky in, go on. Get that little bit closer. And now you’ve lost a finger.

Same goes for “Pleasure Hive” and “Blue & Red” – baying, stretched vocals are rolled around like an endless hump of tobacco in the mouth of a grizzled soldier. It’s ghostly, creepy, a Wez Craven wet dream. The amount of hairs the spring forth from your neck when listening to these swirling monstrosities is enough to make a passerby think that Pinhead has sprung forth from Hellraiser into real life.

There’s plenty of anguish here, however, that sometimes doesn’t translate into the most fantastic listening. There’s a certain sameness to some of the album, and the aforementioned tracks are the only ones that seem to really jut out from the murk. Don’t get me wrong – the album is good to sit back and soak up. But in terms of a record that has the same sort of punch as the first Rule of Thirds 7″ did, this LP lacks that distinction. You can’t help but feel like an EP would have been more in order here to get the blistering effect that Rule of Thirds show they are capable of.

Still, the album is worth a listen to – a stumble doesn’t mean that Rule of Thirds aren’t a formidable force in Australia’s goth scene. There’s meat here, and if you like yourself some Multiple Man, Gazar Strips or GLOSS, it’s recommended that you sink into what this record has to offer.

Rule of Thirds S/T LP available from NO PATIENCE RECORDS here.

Video: Rule of Thirds – Fingerprints

Part Siouxsie, part Circle Pit, and doused in a bloody, intergalactic red, Rule of Thirds announce their return with a video for “Fingerprints”. There’s a pink hue sprayed over stitched images of gothic dancing and guitars straight from Robert Smith’s darkest moments. This is The Soft Moon meeting Rowland S Howard, a perfect blending of simple melodies and droning heartache injected with morbid atmosphere. It’s creepy and endearing at the same time, like a Gremlin, and the more it plays on, the more it drags you in.

Best o’ the Best: Thigh Master + Multiple Man + Prag

Thigh Master – Songs To Wipe Your Mouth To 7″

Tenth Court put the ‘vanity’ in vanity label, amirite? Dude releases stuff by Dag, Mope City, Wireheads and a bunch of others, and has the freakin’ gall to put out his own band? On his own label! Where has the dignity gone?

Look, that can be overlooked, considering that Thigh Master are, I believe the term is, “fuckn’ sick aye”. They’ve just put out a three track 7″ of pop songs in the truest sense of the word. You’re basically tuning in for Madonna’s “Like A Virgin” as its being choked in hiss and fuzz, a pop tune that’s been sunburnt and caked in Brisbane’s dustbowl economy. “Age of Concern” is Yo La Tengo being driven several keys out of tune, “Flat City” is Q And Not U slowed down to a funeral pace, with mopey lyrics to match, and “Red Woons” is just oozing, slushed guitars piercing wrought, dying breath vocals. Spooky stuff.

Thigh Master are coming down Sydney way for a HUUUUUGE show at Blackwire. $10 will get you TM, Bare Grillz, King Tears Mortuary, Clever, Exiles From Clowntown, Roamin’ Catholics, Point Being and Table.

Multiple Man – Persuasion 12″

This one’s for all the freakin’ lovers out there, man! Take your sweet bride, pick her up, throw back that veil, and then engage in some grisly and fucked up coitus ripped straight from a blending of the that rave scene from the second Matrix, and the stuff of Patrick Bateman’s nightmares. Multiple Man can be the soundtrack to that. This shit is dark and irresistible, New Order being slashed by Jack the Ripper, Depeche Mode being force-fed amyl as The Soft Moon watches on in demented glee. Also from Brisbane, this 12″ has been a source of torture for me, as I have waited with baited breath for one of the best songs of 2014 to finally get a wax release.

Don’t like freaky shit? Fuck off, this is for the strange trying to mutilate their minds with the world’s greatest cocktail of gothic synths and drum machines that could kill the Terminator. This 12″ is deadly, and if you’re under the age of 12, I would suggest sticking with a digital copy. The vinyl is probably more razor-edged than Shredder’s claws, and kids shouldn’t play with sharp objects.

PRAG – S/T

PRAG are fucking sick, and I’ll pull some sick telephone pranks on anyone who begs to differ. They are brutal hardcore, music for the deranged generation. It’s Cosmic Psychos in a cage match with Boris, claws out and haunches raised. It’s loud and aggressive, purpose built for destruction. Sludgy, evil riffs pound relentlessly through their veins with whiplash intensity, a source of willpower and insanity. The noise is excruciating, and the guitars careen like they’re the Millennium Falcon dizzily dodging its way through an asteroid field. Going into this album with anything less than the expectation of having your face melted off is folly. PRAG are ugly, creatures of the Black Lagoon that woke up each morning to smash a copy of ‘My War’ over their heads and use the shards to eat their cereal made up of Darkthrone records. PRAG are relentless, pushing with a fiery willpower, a just-got-out-of-bed look that all the punk kids are trying to achieve these days. Don’t fuck with PRAG, or you’ll end up with metal up your ass and four songs of decapitating fury bleeding you dry.

Video: Multiple Man – Persuasion

Prepare your mind to be severely maligned by the audio-viusal equivalent of Tron being invaded by the members of Joy Divison, Bauhaus and Chrome, whom are all on a collective acid trip. This video is what all this darkwave and wickedly fucked up electronic music has been leading towards. I mean, there’s that top-teir of Australian acts like Standish/Carlyon, Forces, and Four Door, and Multiple Man have just thoroughly invited themselves in.

“Persuasion” is all kinds of sludgy, sticky synths and drum machines, oozing themselves onto you, covering you in a thick, black slime. “Persuasion”also features some fairly leather-coated vocals, which run underneath the slicing, heavy-breathing synths. The Campion Brothers have outdone themselves.

As for the video, it can really only be described as one of the greatest things you’ll see. It’s a combination of video technology being fed through the teeth of a tree shredder possesed by Satan…there’s no time to explain – watch the video.

This is basically the music that a zombie version of Shaft would get groovy to. If that doesn’t make you go batshit crazy to go and listen to something, you have no soul. Buy their other shit here.

Album Review: Lakes + Flesh World

 

This is going to be a pretty short album review, because I’m heading to uni in about 20 minutes. But that’s okay, because this review is going towards two 7″ punk records (on No Patience as well!), which are shorter and more furious than a midget zombie on a leash.

The first 7″ is from a Melbourne band called Lakes. They’re less furious, and more looming and haunting. You’re more likely to get disembowelled in a creative fashion than bludgeoned to death. Lakes focus less on the brute force aspect of murdering the mind, and utilise spiky S&M guitars and disjointed dark synths to create a soundscape that would make Alex DeLarge begin to salivate.

‘Carved in Remains’ and ‘Face in the Ash’ are the only two tracks on here, but they recall a swamp rock that’s been remixed with the darkest nightmares imaginable. It’s both fucking spooky and crazy good at the same time.

Onto Flesh World. With a name like that, there’s no way you can’t be a pulverising, gnashing band that puts a Rottweiler on PCP and steroids to shame. Flesh World are like the ninjas of hardcore music, creating a whirlwind of indecipherable grunts and ferocious guitar that was made to destroy weaker minds.

The songs on the Planned Obsolescence EP vary between songs under a minute, which are basically Minor Threat songs covered in six inches of grime and gore, and songs slightly over two minutes, which are the more interesting ones. ‘Scab My Fists’ and ‘Fuck Time’ are maelstroms of sound, hurling and regurgitating piles of aggressive noise onto you with the power of a wizard drunk with power and surrounded by boulders. It’s hardcore music at it’s finest.