Wednesday 2 May 2018

Farrokh Bulsara - Nieder Mit Den Thujahecken

Labels: Ape Must Not Kill Ape Records/Markus Records
Formats: Tape/Digital
Release Date: 20 Feb 2017


1. Zerstoren (Destroy)
2. Wie Sonntagnachmittag (like Sunday Afternoons)
3. Nieder Nit Den Thujahecken (Take Down The Thuja Hedges)
4. Fledermauskacke (Batshit)
5. Aussterben (Extinction)
6. Zweifel Zu Krümeln (Turning Doubts Into Crumbs)
7. Lugen (Lying)
8. Am Ende Lacht Der Geist (Spirit Will Have The Last Laugh)
9. 1988

This tape was sent to me by Ape Must Not Kill Ape Records. It's the debut full-length from Swiss hardcore band Farrokh Bulsara. It was released by both Ape Must Not Kill Ape Records and Markus Records last year and when I received it, there was a note inside from the band, which was handy as I can't locate a huge amount of information about them online. 

Farrokh Bulsara features members who've played in a whole host of bands including Never Built Ruins, Fuego, Ghettohund, Sundowner, Dying In Motion, Rabbit Theory (whom I covered not so long ago) and Mr. Willis Of Ohio. Another couple of things to note; they're name after Freddie Mercury's real name and they were nice enough to include English translations for all song-titles and lyrics inside the tape's insert. This is a really nice touch for someone who doesn't know a lot of German/Swiss.

A million miles away from the artist from which they take their name, Farrokh Bulsara plays a brand of hardcore that’s often melodic and sometimes harsh. Opening song Zerstoren is anthemic as the guitars weave a constant melody, while the drums and bass provide the heavier elements of their sound. The vocals, here in German are delivered in a spoken-word style for the most part though often punctuated with harsher screams in the background. Wie Sonntagnachmittag makes good use of the band’s cinematic screamo influences and the raw emotion that comes with it. It certainly doesn’t feel like as five+ minute song as the tempo and the noise level increases towards a mid-section that goes from crazy hardcore noise to clappy emo in seconds. This is unreal. 

The title-track is filled with a palpable feeling of suspense and atmosphere. I’m trying to think of comparisons so you know where these guys belong but it’s hard. I guess you could sit them alongside bands like Shizune and Duct Hearts as a kind of reference. I’m really enjoying the way they build up to crescendo-like points in the title-track, where they threaten to fully explode only to end up getting heavier and never reaching a breakdown. The lone guitar at the start of Fledermauskacke is so relaxing it makes you believe that you’re in for an instrumental piece, before Farrokh Bulsara snaps that notion away. What they do though is replace it with a song that’s got a great punk sound thanks to the use of chords and a bouncy rhythm. Instantly listenable, it reminds of Refused or Since By Man. 

The feedback that closes the previous song also opens Aussterben, so they find continuation important too. The restrained tone that’s present during the opening passage is there throughout the song and the band’s ability to mix different musical layers is obvious and impressive. It’s the standout song on the album for me. The latter half of the album features more urgency with Zweifel Zu Krümeln flying by even though it still contains a hell of a lot of music within it’s sub three-minute playing time. Lugen turns a lot heavier in the vocal department, which makes complete sense given the pace of the song. It’s not completely that way throughout and there are still moments of introspection present. 

From moments of stark anger and aggression, Farrokh Bulsara is able to create songs that are danceable and positive. Am Ende Lacht Der Geist is a fine example of this, with so much to enjoy about it’s structure and tempo, which in turn ups it’s momentum towards the albums closer. 1988 feels more claustrophobic and if you read the English translated lyrics, you’ll understand why. It adds another human element to the music and an added sense of reality. I think sums up both the music and bands like Farrokh Bulsara. They assimilate every-day realities and emotions into music so well, instead of focusing on the mundane or on fantasy. There’s so much coursing through this album. It’s incredible.

You can stream "Nieder Mit Den Thujahecken" below:-

The album is available both as a name-your-price download and as a limited tape, which can be purchased above as well.

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