The vivid environment of the Leeds based music scene has been a fertile ground for diversification over the last five years, with much of its produce (that of Sky Larkks, Menace Beach and Pulled Apart By Horses to name a few) being found amongst the current roster of Indie labels and Majors based in the UK and across the pond. Its nucleus, however, contains the most exciting forms of unrestrained output that Leeds has seen in a long time and one of the feature staples of the scenes ingenuity, Hookworms, have come out of hiding, bringing with them the announcement of new album ‘The Hum’ (released on November 10th) and new single ‘The Impasse’ to inaugurate the event.
Starting with a jittery synth supported by a clatter of ragged drumming, the track does well in embracing you with tension before it drops you unforgivingly into a soundscape of discord and unpredictability. Exploding into an organ drenched, shouty verse, complete with towering walls of scuzzy instrumentation and degraded guitar, the unrelenting nature of the song becomes charmingly apparent. The sonic mastermind behind much of the cacophony, singer and producer MJ, has had much time over the last 18 months since the release of previous album Perl Mystic to hone his skills of anarchic timbre and colour, and the scenario presented in the latter moments of The Impasse shows that the band are in full creative swing. Lurching into a thunderous middle section, the blood and spit that must have been produced during the final vocal takes becomes all too tangible, as the lyrics are spat out with such venom that the surrounding wail of instruments seem tame in comparison.
Ending upon a progressively degenerating vocal line that seeps into TV static like distortion, the smile that you’re wearing across your face come the closing moments of the song stands testament that the refreshing creativity found amongst the Garage, Proto-Punk and Noise Rock dispensed by Hookworms is both immensely satisfying and engaging. It’s a welcome return from the year and a bit long lull for Hookworms, and this snapshot of the November release shows that what the band have in store will by no means be tame or boring, with carnage and anarchy being the buzzwords surrounding what will happen next.
Review by Dan E Brown |