New Haven’s Bilge Rat teeters between raw chaos and polished surges of melodic emotion in their s/t album released in March of this year. It’s a follow up to their 2016 EP, Townie Garbage.
In “Pop Song,” the eerie, experimental guitar melody in the song’s intro almost seems to be taunting the title of the track. It’s exceptionally unsettling in sound, the way the tune seems to crawl up your spine, but it’s intensely catchy nonetheless. Like previous tracks, “Bleached” and “Sneakers,” there are slower, pondering lulls that erupts into loud, dirty, grungy jams with cymbals and heavy distortion that practically scream.
Like singer Mike Kusek’s vocals, songs like “ID vs RC” start off pensively wandering before jumping into focused sections of unrestrained energy. Almost every track on the album bounces between these reflective observations and unrefined emotion, and this duality is the perfect recipe for some grimy, forceful rock ‘n’ roll.