Articles by Sam Birkett
“You know, I’m not a minimalist composer, I didn’t grow up in that world, I grew up in a punk rock world. Limits have to be stretched, you have to test them – or break them.”
At this year’s sublime iteration of ArcTanGent festival, I had the privilege of talking to James Spence, keyboardist and founding member of Rolo Tomassi. We discussed the festival, their transcendent new record Time Will Die and Love Will Bury It, and John Carpenter-esque keyboard patches.
If getting the Albini seal of approval doesn’t tell you a festival is worth the punt, nothing does.
For Dylan Carlson’s first studio record under his own name, it couldn’t be a better statement of intent.
“I want as many kids as possible to feel better, you know? If we get to the point where more kids aren’t listening to it there’s no point anymore.” – Sam Birkett chats to Itoldyouiwouldeatyou
They clearly write, record and play for the love of doing so, and so long as that lasts I reckon their music will keep growing in ecstatic force. By Sam Birkett
With ‘Colony’, IIVII has achieved an amazing feat – a soundtrack that can both stand alone and meld seamlessly with the narratives of others. – By Sam Birkett
Second Son, Seventh Sky is the debut of Atlanta ‘prog-punk-electronoise’ duo Bold Ashes. It compiles tracks the band have been releasing steadily throughout the past year, and it’s a noised-out statement of intent that should prick up weird ears everywhere. By Sam Birkett
Raspelf trumps Dr Frankenstein with Panco Macaque – a patchwork monster this record may be, but its creator has nurtured it, and so it has become a thing of chaotic beauty. By Sam Birkett
Twin Galaxies is both the album we needed and the album we deserved from Delta Sleep. By Sam Birkett
Dumb Flesh addresses the physicality of human experience from grotesque angles: the instrumental mass of these tracks swell and fracture, ebbing between the familiar and the uncanny as they refract EDM and drone into vital noise. By Sam Birkett
‘Below the Hengiform’ is a towering early opus for Malthusian, achieving in three tracks what many bands can’t in an album. The tension and release of its music is rapturous, its lyrics sophisticated, and if they can manage to extend this level of quality onto their début LP they will be an unstoppable force. – By Sam Birkett
“Theirs was a truly magnificent performance, embodying all the paradoxically elevating but crushing brilliance of the best metal,” by Sam Birkett
On the last show of their UK tour, Sam Birkett met with Christian Lindell from Swedish heavy metal band Portrait to talk heavy metal, religion and escapism.
This is not an album to take for tea. It’s jagged, unsettling, and would probably curdle the milk. By Sam Birkett