Gut Health Electric Party Chrome Girl EP
Well, this is an interesting one. On my initial listens to this Melbourne five-piece’s debut, I was having trouble nailing down points of comparison. I kept landing somewhere among the contemporary no wave/post-punk scenes of Oakland and Portland. The four tunes on this EP are built around sparse, bass-driven grooves, and harsh guitars play more of a percussive role. So, in that respect they’re not a million miles away from the stuff LITHICS, the WORLD, or COLLATE have made. But it would also be a stretch to say this sounds like any of those bands. It’s more like GUT HEALTH takes that same minimal post-punk foundation, cranks up the tempo, and, instead of making something funky, arty, or cool, layers in goofy synths and exuberant vocal melodies to create something that’s unabashedly new wave pop. Listen to a track like “Lethargic” to get a good sense of the uniqueness of this act—I wouldn’t say this “Kids in America”-meets-JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS chorus comes out of nowhere, but it’s definitely not what you would expect given the first 30 seconds of the song. It’s a formula that I think ultimately works due in large part to the tightness of the band and Athina Uh Oh’s commitment to this vocal performance. I’d be really interested to see how well this works live. On record, though, it’s good!