Monday, October 8, 2012
White City Graves - Exactly What You Deserve
Lilith told me to be prepared. She warned me that I was gonna dig this seething blast of melodic, old school LA-inspired punk. She knew I dug old TSOL, so she warned me I was gonna flip over this. She told me to be prepared.
I wasn't prepared.
This 3-song EP of spit, melody, and grime is so far up my wheelhouse it should've been given to me at birth. The doctor should've pulled me out, slapped my ass, and handed me this CD along with my birth certificate and fuzzy blanket. TSOL, back in the day, brought a new ethic to LA punk, keeping all the anger of hardcore, but fusing it with a rock sensibility, post-punk darkness, and some good, old-fashioned songwriting skills. Welcome to White City Graves.
This is punk, no doubt, but bass heavy, guitar chiming, blackened heaviness. "Something Close to Hate," is just a freak out of throbbing bass lines, guitar mania and raving vocals. It sounds as if someone had taken TSOL, Theater of Hate, and some gut-level Oi! punk and tossed em all into an audio blender. Brutal in all the right places, but played with real chops and conviction. Melodic and times, varying in tempo and pace. Dynamics shifting. Really, the song is just a complete hurricane. No other way to describe it. I could listen to this thing on repeat all day and never get tired of it.
"Stalker" ups the modern rock quotient in its guitar tone, and pulsing riff. Not quite, but kind of a Killing Joke vibe with it's near-tribal slap in the face. "This is Gonna Hurt" bubbles out amid a crashing wavefront of post-punk bass stomping. Think a darker Gang of Four here, before the punk mania attacks during the chorus. With that bass, this is punk you could dance to. Toss a few back and let the ass fly free.
Only three songs, but already it's one of my favorite new surprises of the year. For an old school punk, post-punk, darkness-loving freak like me, White City Graves is a revelation.
Thanks Lilith. I'm prepared now.