Is punk rock going through a revival? Or am I just suddenly noticing more punk bands releasing albums? In any case, it’s good to see that punk is truly not dead. What brings me to this topic is the recent LP release of Dysteria’s ‘Fuck the Future’. This London based crust punk outfit had originally released this record last year and last month it got the LP treatment. Now the natural question that arises when it comes to a punk release is, have they avoided the numerous pitfalls that initially caused the genre to fade away from the public’s eye? In case of Dysteria, the answer is a hard hitting yes.
The band’s approach to crust punk sounds fresher than the run of the mill bands. They achieve this by means of their song writing which plays around with the tempo and the mood very skilfully. The songs on the album alternate between d-beat punk anthems with a grinding edge to droning doom sections that provide a good variation from the high energy sections.
It helps that Dysteria go for a very sludgy tone with a fuzzy bass sound that almost overpowers the guitars. The way they transition between high speed punk riffs to drudging doom riffs doesn’t feel contrived. This type of song writing manages to eliminate one of the often noted complaints when it comes to punk, which is monotony and lack of variation. Dysteria even go complete doom metal on the track ‘Defaultocrat’ and they manage to do a very good job at it too.
The frontwoman’s vocal technique is a form of shriek that carries a strong blackened quality to it. It wouldn’t go amiss on a black thrash record. The songs seems to be driven primarily by the bass with the guitar content with providing a thin top layer of distortion. The riff work sounds fresh when it comes to the faster sections and the slower parts are equally good too. The drumming could have been more engaging though. The d-beat rhythm could have been varied a bit more as it tends to get a bit too familiar on repeated listens.
Though ‘Fuck the Future’ is a not a perfect record, it is by far the most enjoyable and well executed punk albums I’ve heard so far this year. Dysteria have a flavour of their own and that is a tough thing to accomplish these days.