We first caught Palmerslum at the Nevermind the Warp’d Festival staged at the Retreat Hotel in Brunswick on a fairly wet and miserable weekend but one full of anticipation as to what we would hear and see at this final punk fest of 2017.
Our reaction was instant. Almost like a kick in the gut that not only forcibly snatches your attention but keeps you on your toes almost unwillingly yet with a delightfully numbed mode of fight/flight and where welcoming the onslaught of sound enveloped your being as though you were being kissed for the first time.
It was different. It was exciting.
It was a contradiction of noise: hardcore but not. The edge is there, the aggression, the torture. But at its helm is an originality which commanded attention from older seen it all before punks.
Each song was a battlefield, directed by a strategist, and executed quickly and precisely. Every song a rod to capture lightening.
During their set on the Ragged Press stage, guitarist/vocalist Chris Cleveland broke a string and (keeping inside their allotted set time on this 28 Band bill) changed it with a speed that would have given a cheetah pause for thought. All the while the band maintained their rhythm with an improv jam to ensure the vibe was kept at its peak not missing a beat. It was as though they were fully aware of not only the time constraints but moreso for them, you lose it you are forever remembered as that band who couldn’t cut it under pressure.
Using presence and dynamics, the sound never stopped. This is definitely a band that thinks on their feet.
To call Palmerslum post hardcore would be a disservice. Sadly we are in an era where one must be apparently defined by perception. Thankfully there are is a growth within the fringe dwelling grunge scene that allows this trio to come to the forefront, push through the limits and scream down a highway where there is no apparent end in sight.
Everything about Palmerslum’s performance was impressive. They were loud but not deafening. They are fresh and original, and have such an intense groove you would have difficulty sliding a hair between the notes. The guitar walked and talked like a giant and the rhythm section was as tight as the lid on a freshly bought jar of pickles. The bass a thunderous roar and the drums crashing down like an avalanche.
Set complete, we knew we had to get these boys to Sydney and get them here fast. We are stoked to announce plans are afoot for this thrash punk group to make their debut as big as their sound.
Regrettably we missed out on buying their disc “Bloodhounds”, but trust us when we say have been smashing the track ‘McAdam’ off the Nevermind the Warp’d compilation.
Check them out.