The Chemistry of Common Life
Fucked Up — a name presumably meant to attract Disney fans — has created a sprawling, lush record with The Chemistry of Common Life. The Canadian hardcore outfit’s second full-length album loses none of its intensity by combining shoegazing wall-to-wall guitars with catchy riffs, organs, and elaborate arrangements. Seriously.
The first track “Son the Father” and the last one bookend The Chemistry of Common Life with a woodwind and the same muted riff before each evolves into something else entirely. Every song in between veers into unexpected territory. For example, two back-to-back tracks are spooky but in different ways. “Royal Swan” could swirl through a haunted house and “Twice Born” is straight-up heavy metal. “No Epiphany” features sirenesque vocals and 18 guitars but is not cluttered.
Singer Pink Eyes (Damian Abraham) connects the album’s disparate elements with a gruff voice that’s a hybrid of Motorhead’s Lemmy Kilmister and the Cookie Monster. However, pleasant female voices break up the potential monotony of his scream-singing. Throughout “Twice Born” Pink Eyes commands “hands up if you think you’re the only one.” Towards the end, another singer finally responds with “we all have our hands up.”
The psychedelic title track wraps up the album majestically. No joke. Don’t be fooled by the 11 goofy song titles and name of the band. The Chemistry of Common Life is pretty impressive stuff.
Fucked Up: matadorrecords.com/fucked_up