We’ll Go Machete – Strong Drunk Hands

We'll Go Machete coverThese days it’s so easy to describe music as post-hardcore that the term has almost lost meaning. Still, if to you post-hardcore still recalls Fugazi, Shellac, Drive Like Jehu, Quicksand or even more modern mathy outfits like These Arms Are Snakes and (my personal favourites) Future of the Left, it’s highly probable that you’ll derive a great deal of pleasure from We’ll Go Machete’s Strong Drunk Hands.

Angular as all hell is this: dropping sinister looping proto-industrial post-punk riffs like pipebombs among rhythmically shouted vocals and cyborg* drumming, it’s clear from the outset that We’ll Go Machete have happened upon the secret ingredient that makes post-hardcore function. They’ve added a few ingredients of their own, too, because this is not weakly imitative music. Despite the majority of the bands that influenced this band hailing from the long-forgotten and mysterious decade that was the 1990s, We’ll Go Machete have a character that sets them apart.

‘DM Barringer’, for example, rocks forward along a groove oiled by its slick post-punk riff: its central chord progression fits like a fucking glove. Deliberate and particular yet stylish and natural, it’s emblematic of the songs on offer here. The band are confrontational, too, as so much of the best post-punk and post-hardcore has tended to be: “I would never think of giving you more than you were asking for” belts ‘Miser’ amid wobbly guitar that crawls its way right up the nape of your neck. Then there are the simple refrains such as that of ‘Kids in Front’, with “Yeah you started / You started a war”, which in a song about the everyday suppression of emotion and self and its cathartic release amid a crowd mingling before a band is about as close to a condemnatory call to arms as you can get.

I could ramble on. How about the sinister ‘Robber Baron’ with its great line “Your motives have started to sway”? Or the funky off-kilter ‘Sad Sack’? Or ‘Good Morning Munro’, which grows steadily from mechanically noodled guitar riffs into something more organic and intense?

But I’d better not. Instead I’ll just recommend that you check these guys out if you like music. Music. You know what I mean.

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* It’s got a mechanical, robotic quality to it, but remains organic-sounding. Ya get me?

 

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  1. […] four hours after this morning’s review of We’ll Go Machete, which I recommend you go read now if you’ve not yet done so.) It’s an emotional […]