Record of the Week: EASTLINK LP
Fittingly named after a suburban toll road in their native Melbourne, EASTLINK eloquently reconfigures the repetitive driving-on-the-Autobahn feel of, say, NEU! 75 until it suits the local atmosphere. Starting with a riff—insidious, relentless and intelligently thuggish, so classically Orstralian—the all guitar sound swaggers and swings like a pub emptying out after last call. On first listen VENOM P STINGER attempting the motorik beat came to mind, but this is not a “if you like this you’ll love that” type of sound, and I feel like I am beating my hands against the keyboard in an ape like fashion attempting to articulate the pleasures and pains of this disc! The tape that preceded this LP was one of my most listened to things of the past year, soundtracking my banal endless existence walking home after another night shift in retail-land, through desolate skyscrapers and emptied out streets. This record took me a bit longer to warm to, I think because it’s not quite as relentless/claustrophobic/total; there’s some space and even, uh, space rock on certain tracks. The lyrics are fragmented and political, questioning in a thoughtful perceptive style that seems so much more authentic than another prepackaged slice of anarcho pie. The fact that seemingly every person in a decent/exciting band in Australia is in fifty other equally decent/exciting bands is quite humbling. EASTLINK features people from TOTAL CONTROL, UV RACE, LAKES and probably thirty other bands, and they are fucking great. Another genius group sounding the death knell of the neoliberal dream.
(In the Red)