Now THIS is a cool drink of water. Sometimes, pure primal punk fury is the only thing that will do.
Montreal, Quebec's Depwine describe their inaugural debut Loathe EP in four short, oh-so-sweet words, "doom punk. sludge. angst," which are even too cozy for this particular band of pit bulls, but they couldn't be bothered to come up with anything else.
These four words will do, if only as sludge. Doom captures the nihilism and emptiness of rote, repetitive living, as described in "Make Me Crazy" with the words "Everyday's the fucking same," while punk gets the absolute fury and desire to tear it all down to the ground. Angst is self-explanatory, and woven into every musical molecule of this short, sweet EP, while sludge describes their methodology. Listening to these five tracks is like drinking from the fire hose, if the fire hose happened to be connected to a vat of radioactive Jell-O, marbles, lead filings, dead dogs, used band-aids and your teenage fantasies.
Depwine has described their origins as simply wanting to play stuff in line with their musical interests - Black Sabbath, Black Flag, Eyehategod, The Melvins and The Descendants. The Descendants and The Melvins' presence prevents this from being an unbearable bummer with a bit of an insane sense of humor, along the lines of vintage Dead Kennedys. But the Black Sabbath, Black Flag, Eyehategod diaspora practically dissolves the goodwill like a vampire in a tanning booth, as monolithic down-tuned guitars wash over you like wave after wave of putrescent bilge water.
As I type this, listening to Loathe for the fourth or fifth time and gathering the finishing thoughts, social media is currently blowing up with the newest wave of grief, outrage and disbelief as more young men were executed simply because they were African American. There was a lynching, earlier this morning. Snipers were picking off police officers in Dallas from the rooftops. Someone pulled a gun at a peaceful protest in Portland (not a protestor, for what it's worth).
My heart hurts worse than a five dead speed bender and what hurts even worse is I can't even be surprised. It's become de rigeur with life on the Internet. I open my laptop and see what innocent lost their life last night, and don't know what to do, all while working 10 - 12 hours a day, just to try and pay my rent and have no life. Earlier tonight, I screamed into a pillow for ten minutes, then went to attend to the never-ending laundry list of duties and obligations of being alive, in this day and age.
Sometimes, sometimes, you just need to hear someone scream, "I fucking hate everything" as Depwine sings on album closer “Loathe.” There's a lot of goodness and beauty in this world, but every once in a while you get in that mood where you just hate everyone, and it would take two bottles of Prozac to even crack a smile. This is a record for those times which, ironically, will bring a smile to your face, even as you're lighting molotov cocktails.
Amazingly, somehow, punk is sounding relevant and necessary again, here in the ashes of the empire.
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