It’s possible that you’re thinking this band is some type of old school black metal worship courtesy of the seminal release by infamous Norwegian act Mayhem, but this debut album is light years from that scene. This trio is also from Oslo, Norway where they fuse electronic beats, psychedelic trance, punk, art rock and noise into one seething cauldron of sonic ingenuity.
I would never purport to be an expert in any of those sub-genres but I know great music when I hear it, as the album casually begins with the pulsing bass line and metronomic beat of “EGO” as the sublime vocals filter in with reams of emotion and passion. The echoing and delaying effect is superbly ingrained into the mix creating an ominous aura as “PushPushPush” follows with a noise based affront where the chaotic structuring is linked to the distorted guitar work and pummelling drums. My initial thoughts of this track centred on a sound similar to very early Mudhoney where the grating guitar work creates a piercing assault.
“Dumb” shifts to a psychedelic stance, the contorting electronics are blended with the excellent vocals, again having an eerie but clean ethos that I really liked. The repeating of the songs title is just plain creepy as that trance like approach appears due to the hypnotic beat. That inherent creepiness flows into “Filthy Sweet” where a droning like texture is felt, produced by the bass work and backing electronics. The song is darkly oppressive, dripping an alt-rock posture as I couldn’t help but think about the 80s UK act Head Of David which you may be aware of. That balance between noise and melody is finely achieved as a more punk fuelled frenzy is adopted for “Bedpost”. That mind bending distortion is plainly evident here as the songs aggressiveness stamps hard on the listener and continues into the harsh “Trust Me” where the guitar work seems to drill into your head.
On my original mp3 file of “State Of The Union” it came with about 19 minutes of silence in the middle which I removed of course. The song’s pulsing bass work is stripped raw and is intrinsically linked to the songs bleakness. Coupled to this are those wonderful vocals, reeking of passion as the song again produces a trance like style due to the repetition of the melody which makes the song even more engaging. Anyone wanting some sonic experimentation or a journey through a fusion of multiple genres should really check this Norwegian act out.
(8/10 Martin Harris)