God Damn have announced their upcoming sophomore album, Everything Ever, due out on 23 September via One Little Indian Records.
To announce the album, the Wolverhampton band played a special show for lucky ticket winners at Metropolis Studios, London (where the band recorded their first album), live streamed by Orange Amps and available to watch back here. Tucked away behind a leafy stretch of Chiswick High Street, the grand building and light lofty interior provided stark contrast for the dark and heavy performance that followed. Set up in the recording studio, it was intimate and loud, so loud that the wearing of ear protection was recommended. For many in attendance this was probably their first time in a studio of this scale, and there was a tangible buzz of excitement flowing around the room as people moved down the stairs from the bar.
The duo of Thom Edwards (guitar/vocals) and Ash Weaver (drums), who have been playing together for almost 10 years in various guises, delivered their trademark mix of heavy, fast and brutal instrumentation. They also introduced James who played keys and guitar on a number of tracks. This freed Edwards up to roam around the studio, as his vocals ranged from guteral roar to unhinged scream across tracks riddled with passion, fury and anxiety. Edwards even unleashed his vintage rock tone on epic closer, ‘Skeleton’.
Playing in such an intimate space the band were at their purest and rawest. Intricate drum rhythms merge with fuzzy guitar work, drenched in reverb and distortion. Even when they perform as a two piece the music is frighteningly full bodied, and the addition of keys only adds further depth. Playing in the same studio where Queen and Spice Girls recorded albums, the performance feels a little restrained, lacking the riotous spirit on which the band have forged their live reputation, but it was nonetheless an incredibly powerful and impressive performance.
As well as announcing the new album, God Damn have also released a new single, ‘Fake Prisons’ which Edwards describes as a melting pot of insecurities that they won’t let get in their way. Vultures was a bludgeoning collection of blistering rock tunes. ‘Fake Prisons’ and lead single ‘Ghost’ bring much of the same, but also signal subtle increases to the bands sonic palette. Synths are more prominent and organs even feature in ‘Fake Prison’ whilst ‘Ghost’ has a mainstream rock sensibility, in a similar vein to ‘Vultures’ before it.
Produced by Ross Orton (The Fall, Drenge, Tricky, MIA) and recorded at McCall Sound Studio in Sheffield, Everything Ever therefore promises the same unbridled and corrosive energy and power, but with even more sonic experimentation. Edwards paid tribute to their record label, One Little Indian Records (Bjork, Fufana, Dead Heavens) at Metropolis, and you sense the band have been given the freedom to craft their album how they wanted, a freedom that, on the evidence of this show, will pay dividends.
The band are going on tour as both headliners, and with Red Fang and Torche in the UK through September and October, as well as heading to Europe with Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes. Tickets are available here and dates are below.
Everything Ever is released on 23 September on One Little Indian Records and the album is available to order now.
Upcoming tour dates
23 – Boston Music Rooms, London (release day headline show)
26 – Concorde 2, Brighton
27 – Koko, London
28 – Bierkeller, Bristol
29 – Stylus, Leeds
30 – Manchester Academy 2, Manchester
02 – O2 Institute2, Birmingham
03 – Garage, Glasgow
04 – Riverside, Newcastle
05 – Engine Rooms, Southampton
Words: William Sutton
Photo: Tom Rowland