A Place To Bury Strangers – Worship

In a world saturated by pop culture cynicism, the association between rock music and rebellion looking more and more like a bad joke with every decade, it seems to me that the gradual rise in the underground of what I call ‘rock band self harm’ can be seen as perhaps one of today’s most relevant trends.

‘Worship’ is an album at war with itself. Drums, guitars, bass and vocals compete violently for attention in a hostile environment of noise and grit. Traditional sounds are totally subverted – this is a challenge to, even a war on, the pop/rock medium itself. Screeching, frazzled guitars are yanked in and out of tune behind trashy drums; its a belligerent, volatile wasteland.

Under normal circumstances you’d have to give a lot of the credit to the production team, as APTBS’s originality owes a lot to this fascinating interpretation of the ultra-lofi production aesthetic. Except these guys did everything themselves, even the mastering. Pretty impressive, right?

Strongly defined by shoegaze and gothic, as well as industrial and noise rock, ‘Worship’ pushes new territory into the otherwise stale trajectory of post-punk, with all the sneer and menace you’d expect from, say, an early Bauhaus record left uncompromised (songs like ‘Revenge’ or ‘Why I Can’t Cry Anymore’ are not for the faint-hearted). This is a magnificent, well-balanced and truly authentic album that proves there is still mileage on the 80’s bandwagon.

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