Geld-Currency//Castration album review. FFO: Abrasive, distorted crust/hardcore at it's finest. By Mark Jenkins.
Geld-Currency//Castration album review. FFO: Abrasive, distorted crust/hardcore at its finest.
Geld's new album utterly builds on the glorious catalogue of both Perfect Texture (2018) and Beyond the Floor (2020), Geld may have signed to a big label, but they remain undefinable and the most crushing band in Australia. Currency//Castration is disgustingly remarkable in its pursuit of hardcore filth and a truly distorted celebration of how devastating extreme music should be. Easily the best album of 2023!!.
At their core, Geld is a super gritty hardcore band that pushes the boundaries hard and no one sounds like them. This is super refreshing in a current sea of generic hardcore bands worldwide, that all seem obsessed with the objective of "we are the hardest band ever blah blah". FFS just cut the shit and write outstanding music; something Geld excel at. The band most definitely has some very strong old-school crust/hardcore foundations, as well as black metal, grindcore or powerviolence influences; they also don't straight-up sound like any of these. Some critics seem to throw some lame psychedelic/prog. labels on their music, but this is just a top-level band utilising different guitar tones/techniques to maximise their overwhelm on the listener. They steer clear of both straight chugga-chugga hardcore and copycat d-beat. Whilst very hard to describe, they use mass powers of distortion in a super-focused or channelled way. If I would label them anything, it would be merchants of experimental hc distress.
The opener, Currency is a terrific dramatic and moody song that initially sounds like an anarcho-punk classic; that builds with a mix of pummelling drums, riffs and background grunts/growls as a mostly instrumental entry into the noisy abyss commencing. Just to note, expect no respite, every track is a fistfight from the start to the very end. Chained to a Gate, like many tracks leads you into a false sense of the unknown and then kicks you in the guts with its very japanese crust mayhem; just gnarly, fuzzy chaotic audio violence. Unhinged is definitely a word associated with this music, but they always steer the ship confidently and the variation definitively stops any remote chance of boredom.
is equally psychotic with its crackpot tempo and the sheer barbaric vocal warfare. The deep placement of the vocals in the mix is magnificent, serving as an additional instrument combined with stellar song structure and even the remarkable use of the brief pause in this track is shrewd as hell.
Picking my favourite tracks has been as much a pain in the arse, as not just moshing or headbanging when I am trying to review this album; but a neat problem to have. The album is just catchy and full of energy with every listen. Clock Keeps Crawling is definitely one of my fave tracks; the oppressive bass and first vocals are exceptional hooks to grab you as well as clever repetition that is just coarse, gloomy and ripping.
Fog of War was the first single as well as a totally banging video, the track is so immediate and a great study of what a bullshit-free hardcore track should be; just balls out and stabbing you right in the jugular. The Fix is In is one of the longest tracks and the best song on this album. They take their superb ability to build tension and drench you in it. I loved the real Gauze/G.I.S.M. feel to this track. It sounds desperate, guttural and so damn dissonant. And the track sounds like two tracks merged into one, and I love that level of experimental risk; that pays off so flawlessly. Across A Broad Plain is a noisy joiner as a middle point on the album that works well.
is another banger that has that impeccable sonic balance; it totally highlights how strong the drums and bass are throughout the release; as both relentlessly drive this track forward in a savage manner. The vocals also work so well in sync with the drums, as the spitting vocals seem to be timed to the drums kaching(yes, I am obviously not a drummer). Again the bass and drums were savage as fuck on this track, another classic gem from this album. Gas of Corruption is a main departure on this album, and no it's not a pop-punk or country music track; it's a less than a minute raw American style PV/HC slaughtering beast that takes no prisoners and is riff central despite its brevity.
is yet another MMA battle, straight-up punch, elbow, kick, and get knocked out kind of magic. Another thematic joy about this track and the whole album is the sheer level of energy in each composition; the sense of animated vigour is both aggressive and addictive as hell. Cormac's guitar wizardry is always sprinkled across every Geld release, but it's a mix of very acidic tones which are pleasantly muddy at times. And this magically creates an appealing mix in the violent maelstrom of this extraordinary album. But also take note this band are yet to release anything even remotely average, all are sensational.
The strong stench of cheap coffee is still running strong in the brains even at the 11th track, the ferocious Secret Prison. This killer track is like Disorder/Chaos U.K. in a boxing match with Disclose/Lip Cream, it's just hyper brisk distorted punk that creates a pleasing hellish atmosphere.
Yes, a forceful and spiteful album that will be remembered as a classic. Castration is the static-ridden instrumental piece to close the album out, totally unsettling; but what else could you expect from these wild purveyors of striking pandemonium.
If you aren't blown away by this album, I would suggest getting your hearing checked, or maybe this album already destroyed your eardrums. Regardless, get this album as soon as possible and check out their staggering array of exceptional merch available for this release. Please support these guys hard!!!
Out on Friday: