by Joe Ippolito
Contemporary Sickness was released October 4th, 2019.
California supergroup, Deaf Club, never needed to prove themselves to anyone. With members from groups like The Locust, Weak Flesh, and Fissure, a strong debut was bound to follow the group’s formation. Similar to the members other projects, the music on Contemporary Sickness is fast-paced, noisy, and unforgiving. Combining subgenres of extreme music, Deaf Club seamlessly mixes elements of thrash metal, grindcore, and powerviolence. Throughout its 6-minute runtime, the drums never seem to give up their powerful yet fast blast beats with occasional changes in tempo and time signature, reminiscent of early Daughters’ records and the early 2000s grindcore scene. The guitar playing seems to fall somewhere between precise and noisy. Putting together Dillinger-esque panic chord riffs with harsh noise elements comparable to a “Man is the Bastard” album, the combined dissonance of both the groups’ guitar players is enough to leave an evil grin on the listener’s face. Singer Justin Pearson, usually known for playing bass and fronting the band The Locust, brings his signature style to the record. While Pearson is used to putting his deranged teenage-like screaming and bass playing over breakneck speed Locust instrumentals, he is given much more room to breathe in Deaf Club. There are points where the instrumentals are the focus and the whole band unites to play everchanging and disorienting riffs. Though fast paced, Deaf Club still plays their songs slower than similar bands on the scene. Often times when listening to a Grindcore release, the songs or the production may come off as claustrophobic due to the speed or fidelity of the music. Contemporary Sickness, on the contrary, leaves enough room for the listener to breathe, while simultaneously leaving them wanting more.
If you like Deaf Club, check out
Thoughtless by Man is the Bastard
Canada Songs by Daughters
Das Oath by Das Oath
Plaque Soundscapes by The Locust
Reviewer Joe Ippolito is a daytime DJ at WFNP; catch his show “The Cutting Room” on wfnp.org every Thursday from 4-5pm to hear bands like Deaf Club and Daughters and more.
He is also the guitarist in NYC based band On Pink, and an avid listener of music.