IDYLLS' new album, optimistically titled 'Farewell All Joy', is available now through Monolith and Tenzenmen.
When you pre-order the 12" you get an IMMEDIATE download of the album. It's fucking loose. They've got some cool shirts too. Check it out if you're into Agents of Abhorrence, early Converge or Discordance Axis (and maybe Daughters or The Locust?).
Press thing says this:
‘Farewell All Joy’ is an intense journey that brings to ferocious light the uglier sides of human experience. Brisbane’s IDYLLS balance astounding technical precision and an unbridled punishment across all instruments with a gnashing, multi-faceted vocal input. The 10 harrowing tracks warp 20 minutes through an insurmountable passage of time, with absolutely maniacal arrangements, grinding intensity, and sudden yet progressive drops in mood as key components.
Perhaps I should be more accurate. Is this the future of intense, chaotic music? Whereas so many bands that define themselves are 'grindcore' in a pure sense seem doomed to rehash the same tired old influences*, it feels like this crazy little band out of Brisbane spend their time pushing far more interesting ideas - not only in terms of riffs, rhythms and structures, but also sonically; their overall choice in tones and sounds.
On IDYLLS 'Farewell All Joy' the guitars crackle and squeek and scream and sparkle in the most bizarre way. Instead of creating clear, thick riffing, the guitars seem to attack with frantic metallic stabs - and effect is unique as it is discomforting. Lord knows what fucking absurd riffs they're playing half the time.
Disjointed sections, convoluted rhythms and dissonance rule in IDYLLS world - and this is matched by an overall production aethetic that is dry, trashy, and metallic. The result is pure cacophanous mayhem. It's like IDYLLS are digging into the very essence of sonic discomfort and chaos, and the effect is a very convincing one.
Unexpectedly, the final track 'Susy' departs into errie of reverb-drenched tremolo drone and feedback - almost referencing something that Earth might write. It's an interesting way to end the album after 9 songs of largely swirrling chaos (the exception being the more mid-paced breakdown of 'Amps For God / Plague Hell'). Or maybe I should rephrase that - it's an interesting dynamic to introduce in opposition to everything else on 'Farewell All Joy', but as an album bookend it just seem too typical and too contextless. I really like the concept and the idea, but I hope these more moody or dynamically dissimilar ideas are explored a little more within the actual body of the album in the future, rather than slapped on as an outro. It just seems too cheap.
But I digress. Overall "Farewell All Joy" is an intense, interesting and worthwhile take on modern hardcore. It's satisfyingly chaotic, and really leaves me wanting to catch these guys live, and curious as to where they will take their sound with future releases.
Definitely check it out if you're a fan of early-Converge, Agents of Abhorrence, Daughters, and Discordance Axis.
* If you hold a dissenting opinion, please provide reference to grind brands doing new and interesting things. I would love to hear some new fucking grindcore that doesn't bore me into a predictable death.
I would argue that a lot of the 'staple'/well-established grind bands in Australia are in a period of stagnation. Nobody is doing much. Sure, Fuck I'm Dead and Blood Duster might get together for the occasional show, but those bands pretty much in a period of sterility, playing old songs they've played a thousand times before. Who is breaking new ground and injecting new energy into the Australian grind scene? Who is touring relentlessly? Who is turning heads whenever they go?
Well one such band is Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt; an energetic, frenetic and chaotic mathy/grindy three piece from the coast of New South Wales. I've kept a keen eye on the band since their live debut in early 2011. Since then they have quite easily become my new favourite Australian grind group.
Their style combines angular, dissonant guitar chords with sharp, clinically precise, jazz-influenced drumming and scorching mid-range vocals. They bring to mind the intensity of Discordance Axis and Agents of Abhorrence, the sporadicness of Calculating-era Dillinger Escape Plan, the rawness of early Converge and Pig Destroyer and the technical absurdity of Cephalic Carnage.
In a word; Counter/Transferencerepresents everything I want out of a grind album; it's fast, frenetic, chaotic and dissonant. For a three-piece (guitars, drums, vocals) the sound is thick, natural and full. The drum sound is open and organic. There is certainly no need for overcompensation via compression and beat-replacement here.
The lyrics are also another highlight. The vocalist (unnamed it would seem on this release) earns his keep as a psychologist. With his lyrics each song providse a fantastic snapshot of emotional wreckage, confusion and mental struggle. The lyrics onCounter/Transference represent a real, actual exorcism of emotion rather than your average garbed gore/horror fucking nonsense gimmick --- real and honest catharsis as opposed to the absurd, insulting caricature offered up by your favourite death metal group. The vocals themselves are delivered with intensity to match that emotion; offering some bizarre mix of Dimitri Minakakis, J.R. Hayes and some unnamed hardcore bloker. Neither the lyrics nor the deliver ring hollow.
Let's review; Awesome sporadic, chaotic and intense songwriting? Check. Incredible drumming? Check. Dissonant, inventive guitar work? Check. Cool vocals? Check. Intense lyrics? Check. Excellent production? Check (and I would expect nothing less from the inimitable Tim Carr of 301 Studios). Great packaging and artwork? Check. Price tag? A steal at $10.
Well, welcome to my most enjoyed grind-related in a long, long time. Fucking buy it. This totally eclipses Gridlink's latest offering, and I don't see this one being topped anytime soon; not by The Kill and not by Agents of Abhorrence. Spend all the time you want pining for your favourite renown grind hobbyist group to get its shit together for an annual gig so that you can hang out with the boys like the old days - but these guys are touring constantly, writing new grind tunes and absolutely shredding anything else I've heard from even the international grindcore scene in recent years.
Lachlan and myself jumped at the opportunity to spin some grindcore in the name of AusGrind late one night onFBI Radio, Sydney's best radio station by miles (for example, album of the week this week is the new Battles album, holy shit so happy). So anyway we set out to inform the general Sydney public of the awesomeness of grindcore, and although my mum still hates it we had a ball.
With Scott Fitzsimons manning the buttons we played a nice cross section of grind with a few other random gems thrown in for good measure and plenty of shameless self promotion. You can now stream the full two hour show below (language warning).
Segression - Never Dead
Death-Cult Jock - War Through Other Means
Captain Cleanoff - Chemical Imbalance
Pig Destroyer - Cheerleader Corpses
Gronibard - March of The Gronibard
thedowngoing - Bad Machette
Ether Rag - V
Battle Pope - Cocaine Yeeha Motherfucker Yeah
Ebolie - 1800 Fashioncore Kids Helpline
Michael Crafter - On Tour A Job Is Called A Gig
Family Man - Left For Dead
Naked City - Skatekey
Blood Duster - Instrumental
Nowyourefucked - Gary Coleman
Agents Of Abhorrence - Agents Of The Sun
Orlacs Hande - ?
Kill the Client - Moneywhore
Genghis Tron - Rock Candy
Acid Tiger - Feel It
White Male Dumbinance - Forced Vengeance
Discordance Axis - Castration Rite
thedowngoing - Iambecome
Hailstones Kill 200 - I Am Not Afraid
Log - Dirt House Boogie
Comadre - Sabado Gigante!
Fuck... I'm Dead - Barefoot And Shitfaced
Aborted - Surprise! You're Dead (Faith No More cover)
Reuben Ingall - Flight Of The Basement Bee
Halo of Knives - Watch The Red Devil Burn
Insect Warfare - Mind Ripper
Ironhide - Doom
Dillinger Escape Plan - Mullet Burden
Damaged - Nails
Tyler, The Creator - Yonkers
Naked City - Batman
Michael Crafter - Drum Circle
Throwdown - Sure Hope It Feels Good
Mindsnare - Bulldozed
Agents Of Abhorrence - Sentimentality & Nostalgia
The Atomic Bitchwax - The Local Fuzz
If you are a self-respecting grindhead then you are already aware that Gridlink are essentially the great grind band to emerge in recent history. As such you will have already gone and pre-ordered their 2nd album Orphan from the Hydra Head Online Shop - in which case this notification is completely useless.
For the uninitiated; Gridlink have members of Discordance Axis, Kill the Client, Human Remains, Burnt By The Sun, Phobia, Noisear and they fucking rule. Their debut Amber Gray made about 700 grind bands across the world simply give up after hearing it. Get into it.