A nasty followup EP to the Perfect Texture LP released earlier this year finds GELD in a more irascible and unhinged state. Soft Power expands on the band's vision of a freer form of D-Beat with noisier sounds, tighter dimensions, wilder visions and subtler experimentation with carefully placed nuances. Don't be tricked into thinking this is some sort of hippy dippy jamband bullshit though, every second of this is cruelly calculated and executed with the utmost care. Damn.
Our take: After the head-turning Perfect Texture LP here’s a new 4-songer from Australia’s Geld. We get three hardcore burners on the a-side and a single, longer track on the flip. As I listen to the tracks on the a-side, I keep thinking of the Impalers. Geld share some of Impalers’ stylistic tropes, like the wild, over-the-top solo in “Burning Hammer” and their general way of playing big, tough-sounding hardcore that stays in the pocket even when accelerating to impossibly fast speeds. Impalers are the gold standard for hardcore bands who can play, and when I make that comparison it’s meant to say you’re dealing with top-notch hardcore musicianship, as is the case here. Geld, however, have this whole other arty dimension that’s at least as big a part of their music as the ferocious hardcore. That pops up even on their fast songs, but it’s most evident on the record’s b-side, which they devote to the lurching “L.O.W.A.G.” This track’s apocalyptic vibe reminds me of the Birthday Party at their best. They also add a saxophone to the band’s usual lineup for this track, though the sax sits back in the mix. This isn’t just one of those “hardcore dirges” where you get a single riff repeated ad nauseam. There are plenty of wild and noisy guitar pyrotechnics to occupy your attention. It makes perfect sense that Geld have found a home on Iron Lung Records, who have always alternated servings of meat and potatoes with the latest trends in conceptual gastronomy. That Geld unite these two poles makes them perhaps the quintessential Iron Lung Records band.