Fucked Up, Year of the Horse (Tankcrimes 2021)

The new album from storied Canadian hardcore/punk band Fucked Up is a massive treatise of all-encompassing heavy music effluence.

The musicians (from the band’s Bandcamp page) are Damian Abraham, Jonah Falco, Mike Haliechuk, Ben Cook, Sandy Miranda, and Josh Zucker. There is a lot going on here with this band. Twenty years and more than eighty (!) recordings in, they are still innovating and exploring. Let’s stick to the “Year Of” albums from Tankcrimes to maintain a little focus.

Year of the Dragon (2014) and Year of the Snake (2017) both feature an extended primary track along with one or two shorter ancillaries. As the titles indicate, these albums are part of an “ongoing series celebrating the Chinese Zodiac.” The story that rolls through the albums covers a lot of ground and that is perhaps the point. The music also travels quite a winding path. Given the length of these compositions, it is unsurprising that they present multiple musical expressions ranging from hardcore to classical, loud and raging to quiet and lilting.

Year of the Horse is a single track that runs over ninety minutes cut up in four pieces (Acts). The four segments function very much (in my ears) like movements in long pieces of classical music. It is not only that each one of them is different compared to the others, they also have individually different variations in each local environment. There are differences in the differences, you might say.

With such a lengthy musical expression, you have to figure you are going to miss something by sampling here and there because sampling means skipping. Resist the temptation. There are parts of each Act that I like especially but I am unlikely to skip to them when listening again because it would seem truncated to me if I did. Certainly the first time you listen you have to go from beginning to end without a pause. Heavy music fans, harken: set aside an hour and a half to discover where this album finds you. It is worth it. Recommended.

The digital version of Year of the Horse has been out for a while and you can pre-order the CD and vinyl versions now at the Tankcrimes store for anticipated September and December ship dates, respectively.

Band photo by Natalie Wood.


Bandcamp, https://fuckedup.bandcamp.com/album/year-of-the-horse

Fucked Up website, https://www.fuckedup.cc/

Tankcrimes Records, http://www.tankcrimes.com/

Fucked Up, Year of the Horse (Tankcrimes 2021)

Reserving Dirtnaps, Another Disaster review (War Records 2020)

Another Disaster is a short, hot clip to the ears from Reserving Dirtnaps.

The music from this Memphis band sounds like punk to me, but before I offend anybody, they are usually described as hardcore. I don’t think any of these guys will mind either way: Brandon Pearce (vocals), Paul Doherty (guitar), and Aaron Winter (bass). Judging by Spotify, Reserving Dirtnaps has two previous EPs, a self-titled one from 2014 and Part II in 2016. The new one, while being in basically the same lane, raises even more blisters than the first two.

There are four hard, fast songs that express the lives people are leading here in the middle of it all, 2020 – “Sleepless,” “Under Siege,” “Blood On The Walls,” and “The Floods.” Combine the song titles with the title of the set and there you have a fairly vivid idea of where the sound is coming from. There is a fierce energy in these songs, and they have a “live” feel to them. You can see it when you hear it. There is as much ferocity in this music as in Harms Way, say, but with the unique perspective and experience that makes Reserving Dirtnaps recognizable in the horde of hard music. The weight of the crumbling world bears down on and bursts out from the guitar and the voice and the drums and the base. This is what hardcore (and I’d say punk) is about. Recommended.

Out in a couple days, you can take a look at the EP at Bandcamp, and pre-order it. There were still a few copies of the vinyl left when last I looked, but just a few. Get going if you want one.

Band photo by Matt Wood.




Reserving Dirtnaps, Another Disaster review (War Records 2020)