Sunday 1 March 2020

Lytic/Amitie/Chivala/Pique - 4-Way Split (Moment Of Collapse Records/Shove Records/Zegema Beach Records/Larry Records)

Labels: Moment Of Collapse Records/Shove Records/Zegema Beach Records/Larry Records
Formats: Vinyl/Tape/Digital
Release Date: 04 Oct 2019


1. Lytic - Insensible Losses
2. Lytic - Bless Your Tourist Heart
3. Amitie - The First 21 Years
4. Amitie - Perpetual Motion
5. Amitie - Overtoun Mink
6. Chivala - Materia E Memoria
7. Chivala - Retaggio
8. Pique - I
9. Pique - II
10. Pique - III
11. Pique - IV
12. Pique - V

I hinted a couple of weeks ago that my next set of reviews would be about four bands, who broadsided my consciousness with a 4-way split release recently. Those in question were US bands Lytic, Amitie, Pique and Italian band Chivala. This was that split. It was released towards the end of last year on vinyl via Moment Of Collapse Records, Shove Records and Zegema Beach Records, as well on tape via Larry Records. All fours bands form part of the ever growing post-hardcore/emo/screamo family that spans the entire globe. I must add at this point that some digital outlets state that this release contains eleven songs, while others state twelve songs. I'm reviewing all twelve songs, because I'd rather not miss one. 

First up it’s Lytic, who contribute two songs. Split opener ‘Insensible Losses’ is a chaotic and violent, but melodic piece of screamo that shows their collective experience (ex-Off Minor and Saetia, amongst others). Noisy percussion, emotive screams and guitar work that flits between dissonant and vulnerable. ‘Bless Your Tourist Heart’ is much more emo (sorry!) in delivery to begin with, before exploding into a stop/start collage of screamo/emoviolence. All the while, keeping you on the edge of your seat with musical twists and turns.

Amitie follow with three songs. The riffs and melody at the beginning of ‘The First 21 Years’ sound familiar, but I can’t remember why (or whom it sounds like) off the top of my head. The vocals and music that follows is super good emo/screamo that’s got an air of nostalgia about it. ‘Perpetual Motion’ is as atmospheric and emotive as Amitie’s opener. It’s a similar tempo as well, albeit slightly more on the moody side. It’s glorious though. Their final song here, ‘Overtoun Mink’ comes across like a mix of At The Drive-In and Incubus (perhaps). It’s not what you might expect but it shows that Amitie’s song-writing and delivery has plenty of maturity and thoughtfulness within it.

As with Amitie, this split was my introduction to Italian band Chivala and they bring two songs to  the party here. ‘Materia E Memoria’ has an unmistakable European flair and rawness to it. The lyrics in their native-tongue are perfect and sit them next to compatriots Ojne in terms of quality. Their sound is so clear on ‘Retaggio’, which strips away all of the chaos and dissonance in favour of instrumental majesty that builds but never overspills.

Closing out this split is Pique with five numerically named additions. ‘I’ is solid emoviolence/ambient post-hardcore at it’s best. It doesn’t last long, but then none of their songs do here. ‘II’ is menacing and sometimes sinister, especially thanks to the spoken-word sample within it. In fact, Pique takes an old-school approach slightly akin to From Autumn To Ashes when is comes to sample usage, which is absolutely fine. ‘III’ feels self-deprecating but sets the mood brilliantly without being over-complicated. On ‘IV’, Pique returns to the quick-fire post-hardcore violence once again, which leads into split closer ‘V’. It’s a fitting finale.

I’ve said it before but there split releases are absolute gems. All four bands here fit alongside each other effortlessly and yet they each have something unique to offer. If you haven’t done so already, pick this up and wear out the needle of your turntable, because you won’t be able to stop playing it.

You can stream the split below:-

You can buy the split on both vinyl and digitally from the labels below:-

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