If you were going purely off the band name and album title, you wouldn’t think there was much to fear from Muck and their second full length ‘Your Joyous Future’. It almost sounds cute. Well, the truth is pretty fucking far away from that. They are a bunch of very angry Icelandic dudes and this album will rip your nuts off without even the slightest degree of courtesy.
It begins with ‘Provoke Me’, which throws out crushing chords indiscriminately, and is slightly misleading in that it is heavily reminiscent of Converge or early Norma Jean. There’s much more to this record than an easy comparison but whatever: either way they’ve got your attention.
‘Blasti Mig’ veers away from those metal beginnings and becomes dirgy, muddy and furious – almost like grunge-infused hardcore. It’s a real bass-driven sound and Black Flag have definitely got something to do with it. The structure of the album seems to unravel more and more the further it progresses, and chaos is a coat that Muck wear very smartly indeed.
‘Time’ is an absolute assault on the senses, turning your mind into a tiny fishing boat sitting on the back of a staggering wave with an ocean of riffs closing on you from all sides. It’s not so much that this music has an identity crisis – it’s damn sure of itself, but you won’t know whether you’re hearing thrash or hardcore meets doom. Their riffs are so damn heavy.
I’ve already made a comparison to Converge and I feel like if Jake’s voice sounded a little more human they may not be far away from Muck. But another band who are definitely worth mentioning in context are Blacklisted. That’s because like the aforementioned, this is hardcore with real atmosphere and depth. It’s violent and beautiful all at once.
The jewel in the crown is ‘Blissless’, an absolute hellraiser of a track. It’s like the rapture itself, a plume of screeching demons spiralling upwards from the abyss. It’s the track most representative of Muck – music with a maddened look in its eye. This isn’t nice and it isn’t friendly, but if you’re like me and you prefer it nasty and dangerous then don’t stop. Just buy this.
‘Your Joyous Future’ by Muck is out now on Prosthetic Records.
Words by Alex Phelan (@listen_to_alex)