Christmas has arrived early for Every Time I Die fans with two new songs this week; ‘A Colossal Wreck’ & ‘Desperate Pleasures.’ It truly TID The Season!
The good news? Every Time I Die’s ninth album is done and dusted; all written and recorded, and they’ve been teasing it for a while now. Yay! The bad news? ETID aren’t planning on releasing it until they can properly tour the album. Aw. (Though that’s fair; given where America currently stands on the Covid pandemic graph, that won’t be for some time.) But in a second round of good news, Buffalo’s biggest and best sons have released two new riff-laden, cynic-soaked singles as a taste of what this next record will look and sound like: the defeatist ‘A Colossal Wreck‘ and the slightly more optimistic ‘Desperate Pleasures.’ Given the duo’s shared and opposing lyrical perspectives, this scorching pair make for a consistent yet contrastive listening experience when listened back to back.
“While ‘A Colossal Wreck’ looks around at the current state of the world and says ‘life is a punishment and only the worst of us thrive’ and, ‘Desperate Pleasures’ takes a more optimistic approach and renounces the nihilistic/accelerationist attitude of the voice that came before. It says that without hope, even in the face of such universal anguish, only death is certain and to give up now when those around us need it most is a treacherous act of pure cowardice. That said, I’m not sure which is worse, being a coward or being a cynic. Probably a coward. At least cynics have a sense of humour.” – Keith Buckley.
Of course, this is ETID we’re talking about. We can already guess what it sounds like based on earlier works of theirs. And yet, that’s totally fine! This is a band who has been around for yonks; who’ve built up such immense good will based on ‘Low Teens‘ (2016) and their older records; and who barely change their sound up between releases, save for differences in lyrical and thematic tone. Yet if there was one band who could get away with that from release to release, one band that I can forgive for that lack of larger sonic evolution, purely based on the awesome material they routinely offer, it’s these guys. Pretty much exclusively these dudes.
‘A Colossal Wreck‘ is speedy, careening ETID-branded hardcore, no two ways about it. When you think about this band, this is the kind of song that comes to mind. Keith Buckley’s raging vocals lead the attack with well-timed dissonant guitars and back-breaking grooves to his left and right. The shorter of the two singles, ‘A Colossal Wreck‘ is squarely about the “prison ship of bloat and rot” that we call our world right now; how “Children are torn from their mothers” and how “The dumb and cruel establish rule.” It’s a venting of frustration at the current state of things, how it’s time to maybe pull the pin and give up. Expressing that life is just a punishment for our sins, in keeping with the Biblical imagery used in the song: arcs, deliverance, Baptism, crosses, and penance.
On the whole, the gloomier but often no less aggro ‘Desperate Pleasures‘ is another dosage of pure ETID, with a great dramatic performance from Keith in his cadence and phrasing, targeting the horrors of 2020. Desperate times call for dissonant riffs, and it’s my favourite of the two. Though it has a little more dynamic and space to its name than its sibling. At its core, it’s about that same feeling of dread and cynicism, about bad actors who poison the well and how there’s no “gotcha moment” in calling out their hypocrisy; they’re fully aware of what shit they’re pulling. Yet there’s a small ray of hope amongst the discordant, Mixolydian-bathed metalcore. Because when you reach the bottom of a pit, the only place left to go is up, as Keith screams in the final breakdown “There’s nowhere but up from a canyon in hell.” For as the song also states, we really can not be saved by the men who are digging graves, and I think that’s important to remember now more than ever.
Check out both of these suckers below: