Cardiff, 4pm Sunday afternoon sometime in March & the sun is out but it’s freezing. Everyone’s expecting lockdown any day & I’ve made the calculation that it’s safe to be at what could be my last gig for some time. Everyone else made their calculation and decided to stay the fuck away… and leave This Is Wreckage holding the #1 position of lowest audience attendance for a gig I was at. Just three of us turned up for what was the strangest 40 minute gig I can remember. Worse still it’s clear that I was the only one of us who’d actually turned up to watch them. ‘This isn’t weird at all is it?’ we’re asked from the stage. Playing a fundraiser to an empty room that’s obviously not going to raise any money, as a warm up gig for a tour that’s not going to happen must be the absolute shittest.
In the supposed post genre age that we live in This Is Wreckage are unashamedly Noise Rock. They wear their influences proudly for all to hear and that’s a double-edged sword but they manage it, and with ease I reckon. In another time they’d have been right at home on Amphetamine Reptile. It’s no surprise they’ve been picked up by Forbidden Place Records for a second outing though, and this time they’ve been upgraded to a vinyl pressing as well.
The album is the perfect antidote to the dodgy post-punk guitar bands that Radio 6 can’t stop themselves pumping into the nation’s living rooms. It’s pacey and loud, extremely satisfyingly loud. Each track is a short sharp exercise in purging themselves of their pessimism-laced angst and doing it as quickly and efficiently as possible. Play this full pelt you’ll come out the other side feeling much better about yourself (but with a maybe a little tinnitus to show for it). The drumming is super propulsive throughout and the bass… Well I haven’t heard bass rattle this well in probably forever really. To be honest the bass was the first thing I picked up on when I heard them and it is a thing of wonder. Those foundations leave ample space at the top end for the screams and dissonant guitar that rings out with barely contained visceral energy.
This really is a super album, will definitely be in end of year lists for those that give it a listen. It’s a pay what you will deal as DL on Bandcamp and the vinyl has just gone up for pre-order as well, why not treat yourself?
Top tracks: Skivvy, The Grand Orator, 29 Needles – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8r7BcoH3m2M
I Don’t Live I Exist via Forbidden Place Records: https://thisiswreckage.bandcamp.com/album/i-dont-live-i-exist-2