White Lung

Deep Fantasy

Written by: PP on 12/11/2014 22:58:20

Vancouver, Canada based White Lung is precisely the sort of band the Pitchfork crowd tends to rave on about in an endless stream of hype that eventually suffocates the band from success outside of the hipster circles. They are dangerously toying with similar dynamics considering their slightly pretentious and post-punk flavored taken on garage/punk with unmelodious female vocals dominant in the mix, but in the end have been in the receiving end of some very serious hype across the board for their first two albums. This trend continues for "Deep Fantasy", their third album, which promises frenetic, even hyperactive guitars that draw the baseline behind an ultimately uncompromising and, against all odds, genuine soundscape where production tricks and sounding cool have been shoved aside in favour of sheer power.

It's not often you hear of female vocalists with pipes as impressive as Mish Way demonstrates throughout the record. Her howls are as menacing as they are desperation-driven, but also remember to hook and reel the listener in through some more post-punk style, sensible melodies that are oddly catchy in the midst of the otherwise high-octane and chaotic soundscape. Opener "Drown With The Monster" recalls a female-fronted version of Blood Brothers with its hardcore rooted guitars, screeching effect pedals, and its aggressive and relentless refusal to stand still or to use conventional songwriting techniques. This is a statement of purpose, a tour de force of punk rock ethos and aggression that allows the band go a little more on the melodic side for "Down It Goes", even though the guitars are still being shredded at ridiculous speeds. Likewise, "Snake Jaw" is a catchy track despite it's instrumentals being all over the place, but this is what White Lung do very well throughout the record: combine a maelstrom of instrumental insanity with a sense of structure throughout the vocals. Yes, the music might fall into the same category as bands like Savages, Fidlar, Terrible Feelings and even iceage, but White Lung deliver their expression with enough brute force and sense of purpose that it is difficult to ignore.

At barely 22 minutes spread across ten tracks, the album races by you at freight train like speeds without leaving any room for breathers as all songs are near d-beat pace, yet display detailed and textured instrumentals that defy the band's punk/hardcore roots. It's almost like a speedier version of PUP, with a totally different vocal pattern of course and without the post-hardcore references. Either way, it is inventive, intriguing, and exceptionally energetic in such a manner that makes ignoring the release difficult even as it pushes all of the stylistic no-go's on my personal preferences list as a fan of Fat Wreck style punk records.

Download: Down It Goes, Snake Jaw
For the fans of: Savages, Fidlar, iceage, Terrible Feelings,
Listen: Facebook

Release date 16.06.2014
Domino Records

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