Protomartyr’s debut album, No Passion All Technique, somehow slipped through the cracks here on IFM. All I can say is that if bleak punk-rock is your flavor, then I urge you to give it a go. Less than a year later, the Detroit three-piece returns with “Scum, Rise!” heading new album Under Color of Official Right. Pleasingly, “Scum, Rise!”, like most songs on their debut, lack immediate reference points. You can argue all your want about some vague linkage to The Fall or Wire, but they are mostly loose and serve little purpose.
Lyrically, this is Protomartyr’s darkest, most crushing, songwriting to date. Despite the title, it’s not so much a call-to-arms, as a nihilistic account that shit happens and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. Despite its bleak message and claustrophobic riffs, the song is not without a tremendous sense of melody. The hooks are immediate without being deliberate; showcasing an intriguing juxtapose between chaos and harmony. As far as punk goes, you’ll be hard pressed to find anything this engrossing at the moment.
Under Color of Official Right is out April 8th on Hardly Art Records.