Monday, June 2, 2014


Photo by Bronson Karaff
I can honestly say that one of my most anticipated releases this year is Animal Lover's Learning Curve Records debut, Guilt.

Three years in the making, it doesn't disappoint.

I'll wait while you give it a listen.

Animal Lover was one of my top memories from last year, and I'm stoked as hell that they're coming back this year. They're a hard band to pin down. Backed by a strong DIY ethic, Addison, Nathan, and Evan have resurrected a sludge, noise, punk whirlwind that's reminiscent of all the good things about AmRep. It's not, however, a straight forward slug fest. There's a wonderful subtlety to them that haunts their consistent, droning, plodding, shredding, shrieking, bristling tempo. It's awash in pent up, tense frustration, boiling right up to the point of exploding but maintaining a simmering angst. Every time I listen to their records, I experience some weird, lingering, stinging bitterness. It's not like they've left me unfulfilled or that somehow the songs miss their mark; it points more to the unrelenting intensity of each song. Animal Lover sticks in your teeth constantly reminding you that the world is unclean and no matter what pretense or posture you harbor, life is a dirty mess. Animal Lover screams at you to wake up, to not take things for granted, and to bask in the relentless turmoil of chaos.

Well, at least that's where I end up.

There's nothing that sparks my interest more than a band who slogs through the tireless work of touring, recording, and playing and still finds ways to be inventive and to maintain their intensity. Throw in the fact that they're some super awesome guys who seem to collaborate on everything, their unique, solid sound is something that shouldn't be overlooked. Sadly, bands come and go, but I'm holding out hope that Animal Lover will play for my kids one day. Vibrancy is a gift.

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