Record Review: Waltz’s EP

Being the ridiculous child of the 80s that I am, I’m always finding myself in need of a new post-punk rock outfit to adore. Regular “noise” just never sits well in my head and punk by its very definition lacks the polish and sheen that I’ve come to love. But post-punk? You don’t even have to jam that shit into my veins (you’re welcome to though). Just let me catch a bit of an eerie guitar, dance rhythm, and a bass thrown way up in the mix and I’m in heaven. Wild-eyed, hair a mess heaven.

So when bassist Lucca told me that I’d finally get to take a little bit of Waltz home via an upcoming EP, I was elated. I hate so much that we’re not also talking about an upcoming show for you to attend because it’d be well worth sweating your ass off in the Caledonia to see the band. Waltz started taking off in late 2018, playing around town with a large variety of folk, all of whom you’d be comfortable slotting them into a show with. The Pylon meets B-52s pop group Monsoon? Yeah, put Waltz in. Motherfucker? Hunger Anthem? Yup, that’s a great line up. Got an out of town noise outfit? Put a little Waltz in there. It’s refreshing to have another band in town that can seamlessly slip between genres and still feel utterly at home.

Lucca’s driving bass in “Red Line” pummels you in tandem with Alex’s drums, leaving TK’s guitar to sliiiiiiiiiiiiide in and out of focus, reminding you that this is a haunted ass song, man. It’s also my favorite track on here. If you’re looking for happiness, well, this ain’t your EP. Everything is bleak and screaming and you’ll be legitimately looking for a resolution somewhere.

“Darby Meets 3” starts slow and sloggy, pouring on layers of scuzzy sounding guitar and deep low end rumbling to drag you through the first few minutes. You will be patiently waiting for the chorus to hit. When it does, expect the sound to just pound you in the face. But halfway through, there’s a quiet play through that leads into a much needed release. You’ll remember that you’ve been tensing your neck for too long, your shoulders are too stiff. If you had any doubts about the first half, the second half of the song just blows that into smithereens.

The cracked mirror that makes up the EP’s artwork is a perfect representation of the music contained within. Everything you’re hearing is busted-up and distorted and strange but it’s in a nice frame with a lot more going on around the damage. If you’re looking for the sound of this apocalyptic summer, you want Waltz.

My only complaint is that it isn’t enough. Yes, I know. It’s an EP. But I’ll be eagerly awaiting a full album from the Waltz trio. Until then, I’ll make do with these four cuts that are apparently also soon coming to a cassette player near you.

Grab the EP here. –

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