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A decade on from New Brigade, an instant punk record made by four Danish teenagers that came out of nowhere and inspired total devotion around the world, Seek Shelter — Iceage’s fifth LP and first for Mexican Summer — is proof that their lives are still happening through their music, and that they remain determined to harness it. Enrolling Sonic Boom (Pete Kember of Spacemen 3) to produce, Seek Shelter sees Iceage’s propulsive momentum pushing them in new, expansive, ecstatic directions. The sound of an emotional core unwound, Seek Shelter radiates warmth and a profound desire for salvation in a world that’s spinning further and further out of control.
deathcrash are a rock band from London. They have toured nationally with Black Country, New Road, and shared stages with the likes of Sorry, Squid and Lost Under Heaven. They have been championed on BBC Radio 6 Music by Steve Lamacq and on Beats1 by Matt Wilkinson, and featured in Celine’s AW20 advertising campaign.
deathcrash write personal songs that remain firmly hopeful despite their darkness. Focusing often on dynamics and slowly-developing pieces, deathcrash make heavy slowcore music that is powerful in its directness and sincerity.
Their last headline shows at St. Pancras Old Church and St Matthias sold out within hours of being announced, as did their vinyl EP release ‘People thought my windows were stars’, which has recently been re-pressed in the UK, alongside a Japanese edition announced with Big Love Records in Tokyo.
The genesis of The Umlauts resides in Stroud, where the group’s song writing duo Alfred Lear and Oliver Offord grew up and started writing together in the Gloucestershire town’s SVA Artspace. Treating the space as something of a refuge in which they could experiment, the pair delved deep into synthesisers and record collections alike, drawn to The Fall and other first generational post-punks like X-Ray Spex, as well as the likes of Bjork and The Knife.
However, it’s at art college in London and the addition of lyricists and vocalists Annabelle Mödlinger and Maria Vittoria Faldini that’s crystallised them as a band. Their debut EP is a tightly hewn mix of mechanical synth-pop, spiky no wave and bristling post-punk, with Mödlinger and Faldini’s multilingual lyrics giving it a razor-sharp focus. On Um Politik’s rough-edged electro splatter, reminiscent a little of the Units, they rip apart the binary nature of 21st debate, for instance; while Energy Plan’s foreboding electronic kosmische is centred around multi-disciplinary artist Joseph Beuys’ quote “Energy plan for the western man” and laments our eroding empathy for one another.