Brace yourselves folks; Killer Brain Waves is the “toxic kiss” you’ve been waiting for and it comes courtesy of Southend-based indie-punk four-piece, Asylums. From start to finish, their debut album kicks and screams with anarchic attitude, and it will have you pin-balling round your bedroom at full speed.
‘Second Class Sex’ gets the ball rolling with belting, manic guitar ringing out over lyrics about rejecting sub-standard sexual encounters. It leads seamlessly in to ‘I’ve Seen Your Face In a Music Magazine’ which is equally as raucous and hormone fuelled. Observations about fame, fucking, and most importantly fun; it’s all here on Killer Brain Waves.
The record is full of anti-boredom anthems, but ‘Bad Influence’ is a stand out effort, celebrating the kind of friendships which get you out of your room, and in to situations which are difficult to justify in a court of law. Equally as spiralling and suggestive is the following track ‘Wet Dream Fanzine’.
If you’re living in a town that feels like “landfill”, you’ll find musical solace in ‘Joy In a Small Wage’. It’s a humble recognition of “growing up against the grain” whilst trying to accomplish your dreams when your purse strings are always shrinking.
Lead vocalist Luke chants some 10/10 observations about the modern media on ‘The Death Of Television’, starting with opening line “Question what you see not what you feel!” and addressing the mind-melting nature of mass media as “Information genocide, too much honey in the hive!”
‘Monosylabic Saliva’ is a relentless, riff-soaked, provocative tune – “Hey moron, commit suicide with your tongue!” – whilst ‘Born To Not Belong’ is for those who refuse to be “returned to the manufacturer”. ‘Necessary Appliances’ oozes with similar wit and anti-commodity attitude.
‘Sunday Commuters’ speeds along like the transport it alludes to, and ‘Missing Persons’ is an outrageous, energetic escape for anyone who’s ever wanted to start over and leave behind boredom and loneliness. It’s supposed to end the album, but hidden track ‘Slacker Shopper’ keeps the wheels turning with its a mix of mania and moodiness. It will provide relief for anyone who’s had to suffer the task of setting up the bargain bin during their retail career.
Inspired by punk, 90’s nostalgia, a heart of gold, and an adrenal gland which knows no bounds; Killer Brain Waves is an incredible debut, and Asylums are a band you can’t ignore.
Killer Brain Waves is released via Cool Thing Records on 29th July, and is available to pre-order here.
Photo Credit: Kana WaiWaiku