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Physique: Punk Life Is Shit 12"

Physique: Punk Life Is Shit 12"

Tags: · 10s · D-beat · hardcore · hcpmf · punk · recommended · spo-default · spo-disabled
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By now people know that most of the music coming out of Olympia WA is important in some way, be it artistically or politically. PHYSIQUE manages to hit both points by channeling the classic DISCHARGE/Kawakami (RIP) model of poetic, simplistic sloganeering and carefully crafted, noise fueled D-Beat punk music. "Punk Life Is Shit" exists to fight the nightmarish reality of inept politicians, capitalism, colonialism, gender struggles, Jesus useless Christ and impending nuclear war that we all live in.

8 songs pressed on 500 copies of 140gr black vinyl with an etched B-side, 22x22 double sided poster and digital download card all housed in a 24pt reverse board jacket. Photography by Yet Demeanor, Art by Bee, Fucker and Devin N.D.B.. Recorded by Joey at Left Field. Mastered by Will Killingsworth.

Our take: One-sided 45RPM 12” EP from this band out of Olympia, Washington. Iron Lung is generally known for releasing hardcore that’s on the bleeding edge of the genre, so when they release a record by a band that is a little more straightforward you know it’s going to be something special, and that is definitely the case with Physique. Actually, I think that IRL’s description, which makes this seem like straightforward Discharge / Disclose worship, undersells this record because there’s clearly a lot more going on here than aping the classics. Yes, Physique obviously owe a heavy aesthetic debt to Disclose in particular (which you can tell not only by their artwork, but also by their strangely industrial guitar sounds, which recall Disclose’s Disbones era), but to me they sound like a more modern hardcore band bouncing their ideas off of some of Disclose’s. One thing that always struck me about Disclose is how simple and stark their songs and arrangements were. Their songs remind me of Japanese calligraphy—where the entire piece is made with just a couple of deft, confident brush strokes—and the almost Zen-like minimalism of the composition creates this rich contrast with the equally extreme maximalism of the production. Physique, however, take a much more baroque approach to the songwriting process, and these songs tend to have much more elaborate riffs and more complex arrangements than Disclose ever had… so, rather than Disclose’s minimalist / maximalist dialectic, here you just kind of do your best to navigate the maximalism, and rather than meditating upon the waves of noise you duck and dodge them like jump-scares in a horror movie. So, even though this may sound like a Disclose record at first listen, the experienced d-beat connoisseur will tell you it’s something entirely different, not to mention an exciting and noteworthy contribution to the genre.