There’s gone much time since I last ventured into the depths of post-punk. It is time to dig up what has long been buried down below. Together with Post-Punk.com, Repartiseraren (formerly Invisible Guy) will lend you a hand in searching – without a spotlight – for those hidden gems nobody really cared about. If they did care, they didn’t utter a word about it. For us it remains a treasure to be uncovered, just for you readers to digest and take in – hopefully resulting in a renewed hope, cherishing the underground, like dusting off a book you haven’t read for a while, that might’ve given you more then what you hoped for at a first glance.
Choreography – Recollected (EP)
A band you might not know much about at first, but what you uncover when you listen to them is guaranteed satisfaction. Even though the name “Choreography” might allude to something less, they’ve made sure to find their location among all the noise. Their minimalistic approach to post-punk is all about rhythms, all about the singer’s careless voice, all about emptiness – but finding a place of their own among it all – is difficult. Even though it is only four songs long, this almost 15-minute long EP leaves you hopeless – all your amounted hope is forlorn, but you’re not shipwrecked.
From “Third Progression” to “Memory Fails“, there’s always something there holding you down, grabbing you by your arms, dragging you into the depths. It might sound desolate, but their versatile atmosphere, their ingenious structuring of each song, is just what you’d want out of post-punk. Everything is down to the core, but in different ways. Where “Nowhere” ends, “Imposed” picks up and completely nails this EP down for me, hopefully for you too. There’s just something essential about the band, this release, especially the last song – which is what made me add this release to this list. As they’ve written on their page, all that is needed is to “Tear away the veil“.
Absent Friends – Stand Up And Fight
Now for something not entirely different, yet different. With empowering tunes, somewhat inspired by post-punk, but mostly new-wave – the trumpet melodies found in the first tune “Stand Up And Fight” reminds me a lot of Essential Logic’s more joyous brother. Although the song feels like a chorus through and through, it’s too good of a song to be left unheard by the masses. Apparently, this release is included in the Discogs usury scheme where some people try and sell rare or sold out releases for ridiculous prices. So instead of buying it for sixty dollars, you can get it for two dollars from the band themselves.
“Drift Apart” is on the other hand more of a love-ballad, clad in the simpleness of exotic drums and good lyrics. The singing doesn’t interest me as much as the atmosphere itself, but there’s something nostalgic and eerie about everything – so this is for you lovers out there who might not be on the best terms – listen to this and hopefully it will mend your relationship. When it comes to the drumming, it’s just so unnervingly calm, but just as it gets to that point of when you’d just want it to stop – along comes that trumpet again – and you’re stuck with what you’ve got. “It’s a good release so far“, I said to my self, as I slowly faded away and drifted further into the mood, into the rhythm.
You should all realize what you had from the start. It does not get better then this, folks. So take care of yourselfs now. Take it slow, let it be what it is and not what it was.
Mica – Static / Pick Up
Here’s for the demos. Remastered to be something better then they were at first. Even though the Australian outfit Mica might be too uncomfortable to wear, there’s something about the percussion in the music that makes it all worthwhile. You’ll see how it fits by listening to “Static“, as the song slowly builds up to be something uncontrollable yet tangible. A perfect blend of the minimal no-wave influence in the song itself and complete post-punk. This is something to shake your hips to, not in a dark club, but rather when you’re out for a walk – delving into the nighttime – as time flies by, before the night goes into another day.
Whilst the second song “Pick Up” is more of that ballad-oriented b-side once again, there’s a sullen sound to it that distinguishes it from the aforementioned “Absent Friends“-release. Heavy baselines alongside a damp voice, with simple lyrics and a consistent message. There’s ultimately something depressing about it, but I like how this song is actually better then the first – which makes it less doom and gloom – from a listeners perspective. “What a dizzy day, today“, indeed. There’s some more to cover yet and we’ve only just started. A must-listen even though it just was a demo originally.
Ciruela Split – Isvara
Enough with the doom and gloom, here’s to the outrageous and somewhat bizarre. I don’t know if it would fit, but thought it should be included just because there’s a hint of artistry somewhere in there still. It’s a strange blend of darkwave, pop-oriented new-wave, synthwave and alternative glam. This trio is from Argentina, and calls themselves Ciruela Split. If it were not for Grimes, Ladytron and The Birthday Massacre, I wouldn’t have payed any attention to this. Sure, it sounds similar in some ways, but this is entirely different. Though their first song “November” is mostly electronic, there are hints of alternative rock and post-punk beneath their glammy appearance and performance.
Some of their songs bring sweet synth-pop harmonies and melodies, but “Until” – their second song on the release – is a bit different then the first. Now it gets a bit darker beneath the surface. Then suddenly, they move into even weirder territory – some kind of bizarre cultural turn to France – taking their electronic instruments with them. Now there’s some more sublimity in the singers approach to the song itself. “Excusez moi, monsieur” is what the song is comprised of when it comes to lyrics, basically. It is indeed very basic, but yet somewhat enjoyable.
“Sun Glasses” and “Krsna” are by far the best songs on the release – and basically what you can get out of it – in total. When it comes to the outro song, “Praia”, is one of the songs that made me reluctant to even include them on this list of recommendations, but they’ve got something brewing that I can’t really fathom. There’s something about their music that is simple – yet good – and you’ve got to include something that is out of the ordinary, even for this, right? Well, excusez moi if this doesn’t appease to you.
Strange Passage – Shine and Scatter
I want to end this on a good note. This is a band I found last of all, yesterday, when I was scouring the internet for music.It’s not straight up post-punk, but it is britpop, post-punk and jangle pop all in one. Strange Passage have really created something out of the ordinary, as it isn’t really what you’d expect. From the lyrical content of “Lament“, to the furiousness of “Viaducts Burning Down“, there’s both the seriousness in post-punk and the playfulness of britpop to keep you going for hours on end. You can also find some of the good parts of shoegaze when you tune in to “People Being People” – at least when you hear the outdrawn and droozy riffs, when included into the mix.
Of what I found for this recommendation, this is probably one of my favorites, alongside Absent Friends. Though the experimentalism is a key ingredient in the aforementioned band, Strange Passage takes heed and includes a bit of it into their soundscape – which makes it interesting musically. They do not fall into the stereotypical interpretations of these genres, which makes them stand out quite well – and they can handle it after all – as they have not scattered the music all over the place. It is quite ambitious, it holds up and is sturdy, because it is built on something that might actually last.