The Armed – Ultrapop
LP – DL – CD
The Armed recently released Ultrapop, their new album. They said ‘The album reaches the same extremities of sonic expression as the furthest depths of metal, noise, and otherwise “heavy” counterculture music subgenres but finds its foundation firmly in pop music and pop culture.’ Fighting Boredom have been listening, you can read what we think below.
I give up, this is beyond categories, beyond genre and beyond much more than the feelings it evokes when it slams from your speakers and engulfs you. The Armed are a hardcore band aren’t they? Well, I’m not even sure they’re a band as such, this sounds hardcore but feels more open and easy, well, hardcore open and easy? Hardcore pop? Ultra Hardcore? Better settle with Ultrapop.The cover is bright, the music is bright and even the record I bought is bright orange. Eye catching and polished it draws you inside and into the music. That’s where I lose it. I stopped writing notes on the tracks at number two. I’m going with my gut on this one.
I heard some Armed tracks and was intrigued by the way their minds worked, then I read an interview with them on The Quietus and it made less sense but seemed even more interesting. It appears that no one knows who they are, except The Armed presumably.. But we don’t, so we have a manifesto and a new style of music from this band and it’s all some big mystery. I was sent the download but I bought the record, bought the concert ticket and indeed bought into the whole thing. Listening to this is like plunging into an ice cold pool. It’s breathtaking and shocking. It’s got a pop sheen production but underneath you get both pop hooks and the thrill of ferocious hardcore.
This is worth the dive into the unknown, worth the breathless shake of the head when it kicks in, worth the confusion and the love.
All words by Adrian Bloxham.