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- French Fries by The DHDFDs
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Hailing from Auckland, New Zealand youngsters The DHDFD’s have, according to the press release of this record, been going since 2005 (when the youngest among them was only 12!), but up until this point had only released a couple of EPs. Now we’ve got their debut album proper and it’s something a bit special. This lot play a splattery and hyperactive brand of hardcore punk with speedy shrieking vocals that for a moment had me thinking that I’d put the CD on at the wrong speed as they blast into opener ‘Wasting My Time’ with a violent vigour that brings to mind the restless momentum of Bad Brains crossed with early xBxRx and the snotty tumbledown momentum of The Dicks.
Over the course of the album, though, other influences become clear. The sloppily breakneck Tyvek-ish noise punk has Devo-esque staccato patches delivered with an itchy intensity, and five songs in with ‘Pessimist’ they finally succumb to the temptation of a pop chorus with some ooh-ooh backing vocals buried under all the scratchy guitar chaos. From this point in the illusion of stylistic consistency goes out of the window as the band’s styles splay out in all directions from wacky Primus-esque funk-punk to tripped out psych-noise chaos to Jesus Lizard-esque groove rock and even a couple of snatches of desolate ambience and oppressive industrial looping. It’s fast and loud and refreshingly unusual without coming across as ridiculous or contrived. Could this be the first great punk album of 2013? Will there ever be a vinyl pressing? So many questions!
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