(Photo: Iona Skye-Wood)
LABEL / MANAGEMENT / BOOKING
Slash Fiction’s much-anticipated debut album finds the Sheffield band in full bloom, the sound of three unique songwriting voices emerging and embracing each other. This is an intentional and ambitious collection, ten unabashedly joyous songs captured with the speaker-crackling intensity of a live performance, casting an unflinching eye on transformation, loss and the revelations of queer identity.
Just look to the explosive singalong opener “Pick My Stitches”, or the insistent stomp of “Ten Feet Tall”- odes to the idea of rejecting pain as commodity, to morphing it into something simple and redemptive and beautiful, all delivered with the tightness of classic pop construction on rolling waves of sound that hit square in the gut. In blending this pop-emo mixture with moments of post-rock soundscapes and flashes of come-hither synths, these songs are reminiscent of The Wonder Years at their most expansive. Other tracks in turn call to mind everything from the bounciness and ambition of The Get-Up Kids "Something To Write Home About", to the bull-headed swagger of L7. With artwork that nods to the legacies and trappings of the genre whilst retaining a self-awareness and humour that proves you don't need big budgets to capture big feelings.
Brought together by perfectly-pitched production from Gordian Stimm, capturing the grittiness of a genre that has all-too often wandered into the shinier rooms of the production wheelhouse, and expert mastering by Koji Shiraki that crystallises the crunch and complexity of the sound.
"Gender, Trauma & Friendship" is a document of a band bursting with potential, and it practically begs the listener to let go, to allow yourself to feel deeply, to love and exist without apology.