Gallows embrace some of their more diverse influences on this latest single and as a result deliver some of the most punk tracks of their career.
Much has been made of the sweet and delicate female vocals that start this track, but Wade MacNeil’s voice deserves serious props for sounding so consistently ferocious throughout these tracks. Even when the vocals are indulging are the band’s more rock ‘n’ roll influences, they never sound weak or contrived or pried into place. MacNeil’s arrangements also deserve some serious credit for making these tracks so immediate. The blunt and repetitive nature of the vocals means that “Chains” is instantly lodged in your skull. Not least because the band have pummelled it there.
“Chains” feels like it has much more in common with the band’s material circa “Grey Britain” than it does their self titled album. The track, despite being punishing and dense, still leaves room for breathing a dynamic that only serves to more abrasive aspects of the song. Though it’s obviously not a metal song, there is a pleasing sense of weight to this song that is reminiscent of metal.
Sadly I can’t say I feel is enthusiastic about “Wristslitter”. For a start, it’s a track which is infinitely more charming than it sounds. I had kind of hoped for something akin to a pitbull which already had anger management issues before I was continuously and unrelentingly sarcastic to it for several years. Which isn’t so say that it isn’t an aggressive track, but in comparission to the dark and positively seething “Chains” it falls a bit weak. On the other hand, that chorus is absolutely tremendous. Really first class melodic and gritty punk ‘n’ roll, which I’m reliably informed by the internet is a thing. It’s just a shame its the only thing I remember about the song when it isn’t actually playing though.
If Gallows are going to keep turning out tracks that are as full developed, and deeply intriguing, as “Chains” then we’re in for a treat for their future records. If they continue to write songs that are as catchy as “Wristslitter” then we’re in for a treat of new bellow along choruses for their live shows.
Either way, Gallows are doing really rather good-by us lot. We should return the favour.
“Chains” is available now via all the usual digital outlets and physically on 7″ via Venn Records.