Gnarcissists | Gnarcissists (EP)

 
EP by Gnarcissists

Family Average: 5/7

Do you remember when that video of the funny surfboarding person came out. You know the one. The one where he talks about getting pitted, and so pitted. Yeah, good times. Anyway, Gnarcissists are a band from NYC making loud and exciting punk-rock jams. On their EP they pour the energy equivalent of ten thousand Jane Fonda work out tapes into one EP. This makes for a very potent package. That is a satisfying alteration to say.

Look below and see what the family had to say.

 
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Thumbs up everybody thumbs all the way up there. The Gnarcissists are delivering heavy garage rock goodness. Gets my blood running hot. Makes me want to start a rough and tumble street gang and smash mailboxes while we drive around in a convertible. Always wanted to do that ever since I saw the movie “Stand By Me”.

Hoping that vivid picture I painted above helps you understand what I am trying to say. This album is roughly eight minutes of head thrashing energy. Stand out track on the EP is “Models”. It is tough to beat a song that is constantly ramping up energy to the point of total combustion. In addition to that the song is spending the entire time telling the listener how pretty they are. Flattery will get you everywhere in this world. Close second would have to be “Buzzin” Its subtle rhythm change up did wonders. I caught myself doing a slow nod along as the song played. Also the use of the tambourine in the song is clutch. Love me a good old tamborine throw down.

These fellas have shredded the Gnar right into my heart muscles.

5/7

 
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Right off the bat with the raw vocals and the crashing cymbals this band got my attention. It’s like Courtney Barnett mixed with Wavves and dipped in acid punk. Gnarcissists’s EP is quirky, unapologetic, and intentionally messy. Like a bunch of guys just going ham jamming out in their garage. There’s energy thrown at everything, resulting in a loud mess that somehow still makes sense. Each song shares the same elements as the others, but it’s the way in which they’re implemented and used that creates the variety between the tracks.

The vocalist has a style that, while it seems like simple shouting into the mic, actually does have a method to it that’s hard to replicate (like I did try). It’s hard to understand what he’s saying much of the time due to heavy distortion, but most of the time the emotion in the voice is really all you need to get the message. But what you can hear is facetious and biting. “Working sixty hours and can’t make rent.” Yeah that’s a NYC mood. Speaking of distortion, it’s kept to a manageable level for the most part (but sometimes it’s leaned on too much and makes the music mush together). Sometimes certain elements are left alone though, like how “Buzzin” had the juxtaposition of the distorted garble of the guitar and the cleaner sound of the drums and cymbals. There’s enough of a changeup that it doesn’t get too bland.

EP comes in like a whirlwind, throws you for a loop, and then before you know it it’s out the door. At first glance it might seem like a usual find for the genre, but you see punctuations of ingenuity here and there. If you like messy, gritty rock I’d give these guys a shot.

5/7

 
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Wow. Don’t think I’ve ever pressed play on the first song of an EP and expected my eardrums to be blown out by someone halfway through a loud SCREAM. It definitely made me do a double take haha.

If the Gnarcissists was an apartment it’d probably be somewhere out in the middle of nowhere brooklyn. It’d have half smoked cigarettes and fully smoked joined, day old pancakes and week old cereal. A collection of wigs scattered on bed posts and dressers. There’d probably be about half an inch of water somewhere in there and a surfboard on top of it. There’d be a TV in there from circa 1986, and it’d just be running between static and old workout videos of the era somehow. You don’t got to live in that apartment, but wouldn’t you kinda just want to see it? See how somebody functions in it? That’s how I felt listening to their EP. I don’t need to live and breathe this acid punk wave to simply want to go to their shows and live in their world for a minute.

The middle two tracks did it for me, for two different reasons. “We all Just Wanna” is a familiar punk formula that was executed to the tee. “Models” takes that formula, chews it up and lights in on fire. Both good in their own right though.

All in all, the Gnarcissists get an A plus on name and style from me, though they probably all dropped out of school.

6/7

 
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I gnar, you gnar, we're all Gnarcissists.

This is solid head-banging punk that doesn't do your head in. With some fantastically jangly guitar riffs, it's a pretty ragged EP evocative of NYC's iconic 80s punk scene. There's a frenzy to it, with enough haze and discord that it all stumbles and blurs together in an angsty, bite-your-thumb kind of way. Sludgy and pounding, the monotonous, cycling compositions put me on some aggressively beer-stained treadmill set on a sharp incline, while Richard Hell is off brooding in a corner and Angus Young is jumping up and down next to me screaming (I know, different genres/era, but google him spinning on the floor in a pair of school shorts and you'll get what I mean).

Despite the aggression, it remains accessible. The songs have a decent hook to them, the guitar licks give it a certain groove, and the lyrics themselves are legible and relatable. Go give "We All Just Wanna" a listen -- it's extremely pertinent to anyone trying to make it in the city (or anywhere).

All in all, good energy, good noise, and a pretty good time.

5/7



 
Sean Maldjian