S/T by The CosmicsRelease date: June 13, 2019
Self titled six pack to go from young garage pop trouble makers The Cosmics (and, Dear God! they look so very young). After a few years building a pretty fierce live reputation and spitting out the odd single here and there this EP is their first substantial release. A bunch of live favourites it cements the early impression of a fun and capable garage punk band while pushing at the boundaries of that genre box. A mix of retro shapes and noise pop moves the opening track here suggests we might be dealing with a little more imagination and ambition than your standard issue garage punk delinquents. ‘Truth Is Blind’ is a 50’s teen swoon for a minute and a half, a fatalist spin beneath the mirror ball. It’s frozen moment shatters as the band crash noisily in but rather than just run through it again with added guitar fuzz they tip right on over into noise freak-out mode, careening about knocking over tables and spilling drinks. It’s delicious.
‘Eyes’ is a bit more run of the mill garage type gear while ‘Brain Fuzz’ thrashes past at insane breakneck velocity. Mischievous tinkering with the tempo and a gleeful trashing of time worn structures seem to be their two best tricks. That’s one more than a good garage band needs and two more than most of them have. Let’s hope it don’t take ’em too close to the sun. ‘Cundy Get Down’ has some of the snap and roar of The Detroit Cobras in its first half but then makes room for an extended solo and a wonderfully chaotic race to the finish line. You can see why it would work well live. ‘No Descent’ is a mean grind and complaint given to sudden head rushes of acceleration. It’s like swaying around outside the pub trying to order your anger over something while trying even harder to stay standing up.
The last track ‘Drained’ is apparently the new single from the new EP. I was confused by what that might even mean but reasoned it was the most ‘pop’ moment, the one in with a shout of getting itself on the radio somewhere. Lamacq is apparently a fan and it turns out there’s a short 2 min edit for this purpose. Sheltering Lammo from an extended ending which runs right up close to outstaying its welcome before fracturing and dissolving into a closing minute of textured noise. It’s the tune here that most recalls fellow Brummie trio Table Scraps with whom they’ll be playing next month and no doubt in future.
The eternal subterranean current of garage rock might wander in and out of your affections but it’s always there if you need it, a joy and a consolation. Like the rain swollen river Rea it’s running high and flowing strong through Birmingham at the moment. The Cosmics are surfing that little wave with some flair. This EP doesn’t boast the greatest sleeve art you’ve ever set your tired eyes on but it is instructive. A vintage street scene in which the sky is blocked out by a wall of pink-tinged static noise, it’s a good analogue of their sound. The Cosmics is a quick blast of fuzzed out fun.