[sic] Magazine

D.U.D.S. – Immediate

Amid reports of a falling-out with Castle Face over a failure to put them on a label-showcase bill in their hometown of Manchester, artsy post-punk five-piece D.U.D.S. are now launching the follow-up to last year’s clattering debut from pastures new. Twelve tracks in well under half an hour, it’s even shorter than Of A Nature Or Degree and yet still manages to be more out-there in fewer minutes.

Yes, Immediate is underground punk heading deeper still with blackened fingernails, the title-track, for example, deploying a French-language spoken sample alongside its creeping atonality so that’s there’s absolutely no chance of it rounding out into Parquet Courts-style punk-rock this time around. Despite their experimental nature though, D.U.D.S. remain a very British proposition, very 1979 (think Gang of Four and The Fall), yet they channel the taught energy and anger of the period towards angular no-wave and they then bend curious grooves out of the resultant bleak structures. Consequently, this is sound of post-punk evolving as it did circa 1983 into funkier, dangerously danceable directions.

The basslines are elastic, scratchy guitar jostling for the attention alongside the pop of woodblock percussion arriving everywhere except where it conventionally should. Generating a primal response to jitter and tic, braying trumpet toasts the developing punk-funk herky-jerk, the morose vocal drifting between disinterest and the indiscernible like an unwelcome drunk at the bar. That vocal and brass combo becomes more and more agitated as Immediate progresses, the insistent bass tapping on the skull like a hangover. Whipping up kitchen-sink grooves often out of very little, this is an album that lets its music do most of the talking however, large passages of it left uncluttered by unnecessary syntax, a free-jazz wandering of instrumentation and percussive skittering filling in the chaotic voids instead.

Castle Face’s loss may be our gain because, unfettered by glances across the Atlantic, D.U.D.S. are now cementing their place as one of the cornerstones of a new (albeit heavily influenced by the old) Manchester sound.

Best track: “Explain”

~Immediate is released 26th October 2018 via Red Wig/Opal Tapes/Et Mon Cul C’est Du Tofu/FMD Distro.~