Tension Span The Future Died Yesterday LP
Debut LP from this pandemic collaboration featuring members of NEUROSIS and DYSTOPIA, among others. It won’t be a surprise to fans of those bands, but TENSION SPAN pulls from punk, goth-leaning darkness, metal, and straightforward hard rock to deliver a collection that expresses the frustration and exhaustion of the difficult last few years. The production sounds cavernous and expensive, like a big-budget rock record that captures every echo and atmospheric swirl. “Cracked Society” features chanted backing gang vocals that shroud its propulsive beat in dread. “The Crate Song” has NWOBHM low-end chug with a deliberate, dirge-y pace that sounds like the slower moments on recent NAPALM DEATH records. Themes of media manipulation, evangelical attacks on science, and the virus itself are captured in the tracks “Covered in His Blood” and “I Can’t Stop This Process” that play out like apocalyptic street preacher sound collages. News clips are looped and layered over punk riffs, creating a grim snapshot of America’s underbelly. The clear jaw-dropping standout is the title track that grows from a buzzy synth line into a multilayered groove of chants, angry punk scorn, and snaky guitar. It shimmers and rages, shaking with defiance. Consider it a dystopian time capsule or a harbinger; this is a dense, knotty, heavy guitar record, effective as it is disheartening.