Touche Amore/Pianos Become the Teeth
I’ve always loved the idea and ethic of split releases. You’ll buy a 7’ for one side and are able to be exposed to a band that you might never have heard otherwise. Sometimes, you get lucky and have a suspect idea what to expect from both sides. Are these tracks a taste of things to come for the two acts or a chance to momentarily depart from their previous works to further explore their sonic potential? Time will tell, but if this offering is anything to go by, the future’s looking bright for these merchants of melancholy.
After being welcomed into the open arms of Jacob Bannon’s Deathwish label in 2011, it’s startling to believe that Los Angeles’, Touché Amore can find the time to write and record with an incessant touring schedule that has seen them perform with the likes of Rise Against and Circa Survive. Gravity, Metaphorically captures everything that makes this band cathartically captivating; a floor shuddering rhythm section offsets chiming Telecasters while you can hear the scathing blood boil in Jeremy Bolm’s larynx. Usually a band to keep things short and bittersweet, their offering of Gravity… exceeds the four minute mark, taking full advantage of its allocated side of wax. The accompanying video directed by Max Moore provides a harrowing visual account of Bolm’s witness to humanity, portraying the uniform horrific stutter effects and isolated characters that are slowly becoming trademarks of Deathwish film clips. The walls seem to crumble down on our secluded hero exclaiming, “At least I tried” before defiantly accepting defeat in the climatic conclusion. As Touche take their bows and collect the gratefully thrown roses in the wake of their chaos, the paperthin strains of Pianos Become The Teeth’s Hiding seem to soundtrack the solitary walk back home.
“There’s no good in your eyes anymore” quivers a soulful Kyle Durfey, demonstrating an immediate refrain from the vocally emotional outbursts that saw the Pianos’ frontman initially contort and tear at his fraying V-neck. The breathy delivery of Durfey’s diary confessional lyrics matched by the band’s ability to stare entire universes into the ground with their violent take on ambient post-hardcore echoes a familiar dynamic delivery to that of Illinois’ emocore sons, Planes Mistaken for Stars. The sparse forays of guitar interplay against the snare’s marching rhythm break their apprehension to then flourish as drummer, David Haik, unleashes some foundation shattering footwork that provides the headroom for the Piano’s singer to soar above the wreckage “So I’m tooold” only to self deprecatingly relinquish himself as you walk through the front door; “I guess it’s the things I don’t say”.