Reviews

Tropical Fuck Storm
Braindrops

(Joyful Noise)

8/10

Comprised of members of the Drones and High Tension, the Melbourne art-punk supergroup Tropical Fuck Storm are concerned with extremity in our culture – and refuse to take the easy way out. On their second album they have really honed their shtick, presenting a record thats extreme themes are echoed in its ragged, furious sonics.

TFS can wear a variety of hats (all of them pretty noisy) and make their previous groups seem, by comparison, a little dour. Title track ‘Braindrops’ is fantastic and a genuine progression, its description offered by frontman Gareth Liddiard as “Fela Kuti in a car crash” going some way to sum up its twitchy, funk-gone-wrong groove; sounding like Talking Heads after a week in captivity. ‘Paradise’ similarly is ambitiously disparate but still manages to sour.

INTERVIEW – Tropical Fuck Storm 

So, to the lyrical content then. Genuine credit should go to TFS for wanting to tackle the present moment without looking for easy, self-congratulatory statements. The garage-funk of ‘Planet of Straw Men’ looks at the futility of online debate: “All paths lead to nowhere,” shrugs Liddiard, “and it all adds up to nothing”.

Closer ‘Maria 63’ looks at (deep breath) the Nazi occultist Maria Orsic, her book The Coming Race (namechecked in Bowie’s ‘Quicksand’) now having a bit of a moment again courtesy of the alt-right. ‘Maria 63’ makes a Lovecraftian short horror story from all of this – it’s weird, it’s messy, but crucially it’s a success. Holding their gaze firmly on the worst of us, TFS deliver an essential second album of strange structures, strange topics, and a lot of ferocious noise. 

Support Loud And Quiet from £3 per month and we'll post you our next 9 magazines

As all of us are constantly reminded, it’s getting harder for independent publishers to stay in business, which applies to Loud And Quiet more now than ever, 14 years after we first started printing a magazine that we’ve always given away for free.

Having thought about the best way to support our running costs (the printing and distribution fees, the podcast and production costs etc.) we’d like to ask our readers who really enjoy what we do to subscribe to our next 9 issues over the next 12 months. The cheapest we can afford to do this for works out at £3 per month for UK subscribers, charged yearly.

If that seems like a bit of a punt, you can pay-as-you-go for £4 per month and cancel any time you like. European and world plans are available too, at the lowest rate we can afford.

It’s not just a donation – you’ll receive a physical copy of our magazine through your door and some extra perks detailed on our subscribe page. Digital subscriptions are available worldwide for £15 per year. We hope you consider this a good deal and the best way to keep Loud And Quiet in your life without its content, independence or existence suffering.