Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to declare the matrimony of caustic rock and scuzzy grunge. Canadian rockers Dearly Beloved have picked up the moniker from a 60s garage rock band, binned the definite article and beefed up the musical sound considerably too. Produced by Daniel Rey (Ramones and Misfits), the album was recorded at Dave Grohl’s Studio 666 on the same Neve 8028 analogue console that birthed the genre and the album that killed rock, apparently. Although this is certainly not the case when listening to the Sabbath inspired funeral tones of RIP.
Recorded in 14 days, the album aims to capture the band's furious onstage energy – and boy does it show. The entire album is like a power keg waiting to explode; it's a rabid, Devilishly possessed animal, thrashing around in its cage desperate to get out at any cost. As your ears ooze blood from the discordant guitars and bass, you realise that an uncontrollable punk inferno drives this album in a way you'd never thought you'd hear again.
Strobe – Dosing incorporates musical claustrophobia with the pummeling brain ache that comes from sound ricocheting off the walls in a small, tightly packed venue. Currents sees Rob Higgins (bass, vocals, guitar, piano) channelling his inner Ozzy Osborne drawl, alongside a Lazarus Q style beat, creating a track filled with hypnotic, undulating percussion.The closing number, Future Shock jolts the system once more with a rush of violent tub-thumpery.
Yet, for all the dissonant elements, the album retains a surprising sense of melody that never falls into the spiral of ennui. This could be because of their female vocalist, Niva Chow (vocals, theremin) or because of the way they unify the melancholia of grunge and the vibrancy of traditional rock. Admission is an album so wild that it really does have the feel of a sweaty, brain-battering, beer sodden night spent imbibing those intangible qualities of live music. A tremendous album that shakes you up and spits you back out: it's a marriage made in heaven.
Groupie Rating: 4/5