When an album from a band called The Buyable Sluts Wanted For Stealing Virginity lands in your inbox, you’ve got no choice but to listen. And though the band name perpetually elicits giggles, this German noise-rock band’s debut LP, Antacids, is serious business.
Noise-rock, like other niche generes, is musically limited; there are only so many harsh waves of feedback, grinding loops of artsy junk, and punishing volume settings a band can ever truly utilize. Even still, TBSWFSV work exceptionally well within those rigid confines.
Part of that appeal (besides invoking pseudo-contemporaries The Soft Pack) has to do with the band’s understanding of solid rock grooves and structures. “Heart Grow Fonder” has one of the better such grooves on the entire LP. The bassline drives it in a melodic direction, while the tweaks and touches of effects keep things unpredictable in a decidedly predictable manner. “Infinite” follows a similar formula, with the closing chorus a powerhouse of hissing, scorching sounds. The first 75%, though, is a somber flow of indie strum and sparkle, a stark contrast of the storm to come.
What’s so refreshing about TBSWFSV is that most of the heavy-duty noise stuff is confined to larger, more experimental numbers. “22 Left” swells and expands from a whimper to a frantic stream of guitar mutilation. It’s formulaic through and through, but there’s an emotional connectivity offered in the racket.
While “Trouble Is Holocene” isn’t exactly experimental, it feels equally thrilling. The beginning is an indie-pop gem, with the ultra-low-key chorus utterly inescapable. Where previous tracks flirted with shifting dynamics, this track’s final four minutes grow more diluted and noisy. Though the monster never turns back, the struggle is simply joyous.
Upstart bands don’t always have to reinvent the wheel; sometimes it’s plenty to do the music right even if it’s been done 1,000 times before. That’s why, amidst the sea of noise provocateurs, TBSWFSV deserves your attention. Plus, the band name is totes awesome.
Essential Tracks: “Trouble Is Holocene”, “Infinite”