Release Date: Jul 10, 2015
Record label: Metropolis
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock
The last time The Membranes put an album out they lived in a different universe: 1989, the Cold War, Thatcher, the shadow of the A-Bomb, poll tax, the fading unions, impending recession, the IRA, the Blonde Ambition tour, Terry fucking Wogan. If ever there was a time to be ragtag, discordant, angry, art-punk odd balls it was the Eighties and The Membranes made sense. Then, of course, the world changed.
Scary post-punk legends return to bewilder. While virtually everyone else in the 80s indie scene was jangling ineffectually and wearing cardigans, The Membranes were inserting sticks of dynamite into the ears of the twee and screaming into their faces as their brains exploded. ADVERTISINGinRead invented by Teads .
"I am unapologetic middle aged f---ed up 21st century man," John Robb bellows on Dark Matter/Dark Energy, the first album in 26 years from U.K. post-punk noise merchants the Membranes, and if that isn't necessarily an autobiographical statement, it certainly seems to suit him and his music. The bass-heavy, profoundly sinister frontal assault of the Membranes' music may be a bit more refined in the year 2015, but not by much; studiocraft seems to have buffed off a few of the group's sharper edges, but both musically and philosophically, this is still the aural equivalent of a mugger hitting you in the face with a length of pipe, confrontational and unashamed.
The Berlin Wall was still standing and the indie-dance revolution had just kicked off when Blackpool/Manchester post-punk alliance The Membranes released their last LP, To Slay The Rock Pig, in 1989. They folded shortly after, however; frontman John Robb then embarked on a successful journalistic career and pursued diverse musical endeavours, initially with indie-dance project Sensurround and later with the critically acclaimed, punk-soul outfit Goldblade. Establishing a new line-up featuring guitarist Peter ‘Tank’ Byrchmore (ex-The Nightingales) and Inca Babies/ Goldblade drummer Rob Haynes, The Membranes eventually regrouped for 2009’s All Tomorrow’s Parties bash and have remained active since.
Despite its awful and constantly taunting inevitability, nothing can prepare you for the death of a parent. This is a unique form of bereavement; unlike the passing of people you've chosen to invest your emotions and time with, this is one of the people responsible for bringing you into the world, and the fact that you're tied by blood makes it all the more terrible. You're inexorably linked together and, for most people, bound by an unconditional love that's been in place since before you were even born.
Raise your hand if you remember this UK post-punk bunch from the late ‘80s (not enough hands raised). I remember them because Homestead released a few of their records in between releasing stuff by likeminded souls like Sonic Youth, Naked Raygun and Big Black. The band called it quits in the early ‘90s, returned in 2009 with and then dove back underground again, never to be seen or heard from again…until now.
You know about the big releases each week, but what about the smaller albums which may have passed underneath your radar? We’ve rounded up nine of the best new album releases from this week, from Ocar’s lo-fi pop to the glitchy electronica of Son Lux: don’t miss out..