If Hole made more dreamy shoegazer rock.
I’m a sucker for perfectly poised shoegaze. That’s exactly what Submotile bring with their new album ‘Sonic Day Codas’. The Irish-Italian band sound one part Hole, one part Lush, two parts shoegaze and a splash of Curve. Together it makes for a potent mix.
I think many bands feel like just amping up the guitars and making a wall of noise is enough to be a good shoegaze album. Submotile manage to make their sound feel effortless because of how the guitar and surge of noises glide. You have all of the power of electricity pouring out the speakers but its elegantly concentrated into flows of consciousness. That might sound a bit woo-woo but when you have smooth guitar noises overpowering dreamy vocals and rolling drums – it feels epic.
This allows Submotile to tackle a variety of rock genres across their album. For instance ‘Anhedonia’ is a psychedelic post-rock odyssey. It’s a hippy space to get lost in and then surge through as the guitars swamp the chilled vibe. ‘Devolved’ brings in 80’s 4AD Cocteau Twin vibes and mixes it with a searing guitar crunch you’d expect from someone like Curve. Then you have the expansive wall of sound anthems like ‘Vital Signs’, ‘Sunflower’ and ‘Cyanotic’. All three tracks absolutely smash the grungy alternative riff-heavy speaker blasted sound perfectly. I hear elements of Hole (Courtney Love) in their set up but aside from catchy chords, they aren’t alike. Instead, it’s more the energetic intent that’s the same – both want to rock hard. ‘Arcana’ is a stunning mix of alt-rock, dark folk and noise rock and is an easy favourite on first listen as it effortlessly transitions between them all.
Whilst Submotile refuses to take a break across their album, there are a few tracks that are heavier and darker than the trashing pedal down anthems elsewhere. Closer ‘Waves of Life’ is an epic noise rock piece that transitions into a post-rock outro. ‘Microdose’ runs the full gambit of something you’d expect on late 80’s pop-rock before going full Slowdive on us with tight riffs, explosive jams and bleeding vocals. Lastly ‘No Exit Cracks’ turns the reverb up on literally everything to make it a chaotic haze of a rock track that is a glorious blazing tribute to all those that gaze.
The sheer energy and joy that erupts from each and every song on ‘Sonic Day Codas’ make it easily one of my favourite shoegaze albums in the last few years. If someone wanted to try out this style of rock, Submotile has created a gateway album to get started. Seriously addictive, designed to be played loud and an absolute riot – get this now. Gazing has never been so good.
Recommended track: Sunflower
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