Thanks to New Jersey’s Last Wars I found Flipper. How I didn’t know them before now is a mystery. Flipper made scrawny and lean wiry punk that bristled with raw west coast grind, ‘Get Away’ is a gleaming example.
But here it’s been minimised, messed up and pumped. Chewed up and gurned out in protopunk ‘tronica. Last Wars have mixed up a cool chaos sound made of rasp and home brewed lo-fi synths.
Imagine Magazine covering The Dictators, where the scrawl and the clash of frenetic guitars get replaced with crude 80’s no-wave. All the heat and the guts stay the same and remain, but the footprints and sonics get shifted. That’s just how this track comes across, something more than a cover and homage. Last Wars took the template and stretched it, unscuzzed it, then drenched it new kinds of dirt.
There’s a mass of untamed semi-analogue sounds that real around squelching and squeeling. There’s a bass line that could have been ripped from The Stranglers, then fed through a mesh-muffled amp. Over top, there’s the tones of those iced 80’s synths, and below, there’s a stone-age primordial beat that’s been programmed and looped on repeat. This is bedroom based punk for electro free-wheelers, all scratchy and rat tailed and ragged.
This isn’t Last Wars’ first appearance, last month’s playlist showed off their last single. ‘Dust’, an original, almost clean in comparison, leans hard on ‘Saturn Strip’ era Vega. And with an EP on the way and with that cool throwback sound, I’m betting they’ll be here again. Until then, enjoy this, check the last singles too, then find Flipper if still feeling hungry.