Lower Slaughter
Some Things Take Work

(Box Records)


The average trajectory of most British hardcore acts always seems to look like this: get together, release a handful of EPs, maybe put out an album, and then implode and turn into an experimental band. Therefore, can I start off by saying that the sheer fact that Lower Slaughter are on to their second album, and have managed to do it while split between Glasgow and Brighton, is a pretty solid achievement.

Mostly, ‘Some Things Take Work’ builds on the ideas put down on the first record, ‘What Big Eyes’. Turning the Motorhead/Pissed Jeans references up to full whack, this record is basically a parade of big fucking riffs followed by big fucking breakdowns. Songs like ‘Gas’ and ‘Into the Woods’ lumber along with the motive force of bulldozers, while Sinead Young’s explorations on mental health, toxic relationships and existential struggles sing out like a raw nerve.

With the band living at opposite ends of the UK it comes as absolutely no surprise to find out that ‘Some Things Take Work’ is the product of a long-distance relationship. Writing the bulk of the record by correspondence has resulted in an album that almost feels ‘considered’ when compared to most punk records. While the new sounds and textures are impressive (the band even pull off a Mogwai-like wall of sound on ‘Hindsight’) it does feel like it’s come at the price of some of the vibrancy of the previous record – which was relentless in its intensity.