Well folks, this has been an album I have long been awaiting for (and so yes, I feel a little embarrassed that I am writing on the matter over a week late). While the album caught my attention with its references to the Mayan calendar’s Long Count, which indicates the beginning (August 11, 3114 BCE) and end (December 21, 2012) of the current civilization, the past several weeks have created an even eerier reputation to the group. Regardless of the odd timing and conspiracy like development, Dissociative Identity Productions is at least happy to report that yes, the album does live up beyond the controversy to an actually amazing album. This Town Needs Guns, or TTNG (due to obvious developments in the US) brings a force unknown in previous releases with a refinement that you have come to expect from the group.
188.8.131.52.0 is TTNG‘s first album featuring their new vocalist Henry Tremain after the former lead singer, Stuart Smith, left in 2011. While fans of “Animals” may feel nostalgia, this lineup seems to show considerable growth and cohesion already. The album opener, “Cat Fantastic“, kicks things off with an incredibly nimble plucking guitar melody combined with the warmth of Tremain‘s voice and the song’s hooky chord progression which all makes it easy to forget the depth of what you are hearing. Elsewhere, the ethereal vocal melodies weave together with a rapid-fire guitar and bass interplay as displayed on “Havoc In The Forum“. “I’ll Take The Minute Snake” is rich with a sliced-up sounding drum pattern while Tremain‘s vocal intricacies in “Left Aligned” prove his new found position while slithering bass chords, fugue-like guitar notes and rollicking drums form a sturdy base to explore from, like Battlestar Galactica to a Raptor (ok, I’ve been fairly addicted to the program recently). “184.108.40.206.1” perfectly closes the album with a chiming lullaby of interwoven piano and lightly plucked guitar notes, adding a seeming moment of silence to the album experience. Appropriate in my mind.
Take a listen through the streamed link above but more importantly, be sure to catch them live/grab a vinyl for the full experience. I could understand some skepticism to buy the vinyl when its a lofi as hell group but believe me, the quality of the album will make you reconsider. So long time in anticipation and waiting: am I disappointed? Not in the slightest.