Release Date: Jun 17, 2014
Record label: Domino
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
White Lung's Sorry was majestic and a work of art in its own right, but Deep Fantasy takes them to a whole new level.It never ceases to amaze how they fit metal riffs into templates of hardcore, skate or thrash punk. Each song is so concise, high–octane and grating – all perfectly mapped into an unpolished and grainy sound. Every word from Mish Way just has an elegant ring of badassery to it and once more, they never waver.
White Lung emerged from Vancouver's DIY underground fully formed. Fierce, abrasive, but with an inherent tunefulness, each of their records has expanded the band's sound without losing the blitzkrieg of rage that's always been at their core. Deep Fantasy, the band's third full-length, is the culmination of that expansion, just in time for the group's jump up to mega-indie Domino Records.Like their two previous efforts Deep Fantasy clocks in around 20 minutes, but it feels like a towering inferno next to those records.
White Lung aren’t subtle—but then again, neither is the doorman who assumes every woman with a band is either a groupie or the merch girl. Nor is your average comments section in response to just about any article posted about a female artist. Nor are the standards of physical beauty, relationship dynamics, and personal happiness promulgated by pop culture.
When I listened to Deep Fantasy for the first time, I was painting my nails, hoping to reflect late spring with a shade of pink. I thought about what it means to spend time choosing a color, then applying two coats and waiting for them to dry. I wondered about the radical potential of cosmetics for someone, like me, who constantly checks the circumference of each wrist.
Head here to submit your own review of this album. Coughed up a spider this morning. Nightmare stuff. Yakking my guts' accumulated ooze into the porcelain, this broken little fella came up in the goo, a couple of darker shapes in the yellow where he'd broken in two somewhere on the way out. I ….
The onstage presence and online writing of Vancouver punk three-piece White Lung's lead singer Mish Way (she writes about gender and music for publications such as Rookie and Vice) may be what brought her band to A&Rs' attention, but it's the group's ability to run the punk gamut that makes Deep Fantasy their most complete album yet. The band were signed to the same Canadian label as Fucked Up, but where the latter took hardcore's brevity and turned it on its head with meandering epics, White Lung place their faith in two-minute blasts. From moments that are reminiscent of Hell Awaits-era Slayer, with the thrashy dissonance of I Believe You and opener Drown With the Monster, to the melodic punk-pop of Lucky One, it's an exercise in driving, angry songwriting.
Blink and you’ll miss it. White Lung’s debut on Domino, ‘Deep Fantasy’, barely lasts twenty minutes and is a full-throttle assault on the senses. Heading into the studio as a three-piece after touring on the back of the critically acclaimed ‘Sorry’, the band actually come across as rather unapologetic as they tear through ten tracks of abrasive and confrontational rock’n’roll.
A white-knuckle ride from start to finish, White Lung’s third album might find a place in the annals of indie rock: Rare is the band whose second release lands on esteemed top 10 lists, and rarer still is the band whose third release is even more of a success. With 10 blazing tracks averaging about two minutes each, the Vancouver band’s distinct brand of melodic punk might be too much to take, were it not for Mish Way’s cool command of the mic. Kenneth William’s guitars slither and bite, but it’s the singer’s finesse that establishes a security unbeknownst to most young bands—especially those of the punk-rock ilk.
Back in May, White Lung frontwoman Mish Way fired a tweet at all the lazy rock writers out there: “Please stop calling my band ‘riot grrrl.’ It’s not 1992. I don’t come from Olympia. It’s 2014. I got my own thing. Thank you.” It’s a haphazard label, considering riot grrrl was more ….
The move to 'major indie’ Domino has not stripped White Lung of their ferocious sound. Their punk credentials very much intact, third record Deep Fantasy sees the band continue their staunch, relentless campaign of sheer noise, and does so without any apology or compromise. Clocking in at 27 minutes, it's as direct a record as you are likely to hear this year.
White Lung has only one setting, and that’s to go all out. Then again, it’s not like White Lung gives itself much time and space to do anything other than that on its breakthrough new effort Deep Fantasy, considering how the group rampages through ten punk-pop rompers in 22 minutes. That breakneck speed is what triggers the visceral first reaction that Deep Fantasy elicits, though it’s not like you really get a chance to process what’s happening when it’s happening.
Vancouver B.C.-based punks White Lung reached a blistering peak on their 2012 sophomore album Sorry, an unrelenting assault of knotty guitar leads and powerful vocal performances from singer Mish Way, all rushing by in less than 20 minutes. It would be their last album before changing labels, and Deep Fantasy, their first for more prominent indie imprint Domino Recording Co., loses none of the fury of their earlier work. In fact, with only a few exceptions, White Lung keep exceedingly true to their template of marrying a complex sense of melody with abrasive punk brilliance following the Dischord Records post-punk ideal and '90s grunge pop acts like Hole or Seaweed.
A vicious sloughing of relentless, Formula 1-paced thrash, White Lung’s third album stands out from the hardcore hopefuls thanks to frontwoman Mish Way’s vocal, a crystal clear heckle that tempts as much as it terrifies. The deft, breakneck musicality of guitarist Kenneth William provides a solid foil to Way’s much-needed snarl – the fact that, since the release of their last record, half of the band are now living in Los Angeles and the other in the group’s original base of Vancouver doesn’t seem to have impacted on their chemistry. In time-honoured aggro-punk tradition, most of the album’s 10 tracks sit around the two-minute mark.
Vancouver's White Lung barreled into punk fans' hearts with 2010's It's the Evil, followed by 2012's venomous Sorry. They're as furiously formidable as ever on their third LP. Mish Way's damning yowls offer profound ruminations on sex and body image, while guitarist Kenneth William's swift, discordant lashes resurrect the finer aspects of 2000s-era post-hardcore; drummer Anne-Marie Vassiliou holds down a steady velocity, pelting listeners with relentless rounds of thrash.
Last year, I had the opportunity to see the Vancouver punk outfit known as White Lung do its thing in the basement hall of the Unitarian Church in Philadelphia. The band shared their stage with METZ and Iceage: a good bill if I do say so and definitely the type of line-up suited for the Church’s humid and crowded basement, which was packed with attentive youth, many clutching paper bags housing ill-gotten beverages, their bodies colliding with each other or rocking back and forth, wafts of adolescent B.O. hanging in the air.
opinion bySAMUEL TOLZMANN < @scatlint > When Vancouver’s White Lung made a big splash with 2010 debut It’s The Evil, they’d already been working hard for four years–current guitarist Kenneth William joining founding members Mish Way (vocals) and Anne-Marie Vassiliou (drums) in 2008–this explains how it came to be that on their debut album, White Lung sounded so evolved. They were already making music that, though easily chalked up as post-hardcore punk, was remarkably, gratifyingly challenging and imaginative. Their songs, which only pass the two-minute mark when they’re careening so wildly the band can’t quite grind to a proper halt in time, can come off as dense and monolithic, but listen closer: White Lung aren’t just jackhammering chords into your skull.
The moment that Canadian foursome White Lung announced their arrival (and I mean really announced their arrival) was their second album Sorry. Nineteen minutes long and stripped of all unnecessary parts, it made a star out of singer Mish Way; her full-throated voice was confrontationally punk-as-fuck as much as it was dripping with melody, and her way with a lyric (Way also writes brilliantly for a number of publications) made that album a gripping listen. Despite its brevity, Sorry paved the way for the White Lung we find roaring out of the blocks on Deep Fantasy, their third album and first for Domino Records.
White Lung Deep Fantasy (Domino) All three White Lung LPs fit onto one disc with room leftover for an EP. Third "full-length" Deep Fantasy splits the difference between the Vancouver trio's first two fast tracks, both in time and grace. As raw as 2010 debut It's the Evil (24 minutes), and as svelte but sweet as 19-minute successor Sorry two years later, this cigarette break of hardcore pop encases Kenneth William's sawing riffs – buzz saw, jigsaw, circular saw – in Ramonesian post-punk ("Down It Goes").