Album Review: Disembarked – “I Do Nothing But Regret The Fact I Left”

Considering the vast amount of screamo/post-hardcore revivalist bands knocking around in the US and UK at the moment, it comes as a quite a surprise that one of the best current records in this genre would instead come from Sweden. It’s true though, there has definitely been an over-saturation of bands that “sound a bit like Defeater” or “sound a bit like Touché Amoré” in recent years. As much as I admire Pianos Become The Teeth for their ferocious onslaught and La Dispute for their off-kilter poetic twist, the influence these bands have had on this new wave of acts both sides of the Atlantic is often far too apparent and it can get a bit boring to hear.

I’m a big fan of this genre and have been since I was a teenager, so in defense of some of these unoriginal “wave-riders” that we see popping up as an opening act for a band that sound exactly like a better version of them, at least they aren’t all playing the tough-guy hardcore or hardcore/death metal crossover you literally couldn’t escape a few years back. You know the types, the kind of bands with fans that somehow think they have more in common with the hip-hop scene than they do the punk scene. Don’t get me wrong, I’m partial to a bit of grunting and a punch the floor breakdown every now and again but my heart will always lie with the emotional side of hardcore music.

This is where Disembarked come in. Not only are they from a country that doesn’t have as big a scene for this style of music as the US and UK, but they’ve gone and created a record that genuinely stands out in comparison to hundreds of releases that those countries have provided in the last few years. ‘I Do Nothing But Regret The Fact I Left’ is an aggressive, passionate and intricate demonstration of why Disembarked deserve to be up there with the bands I mentioned at the start of this review. Sure, there are a few similarities to those bands (mostly Pianos Become The Teeth) but the Stockholm five-piece have approached screamo in their own way, rather than shamelessly copying an existing template.

This record owes as much to post-rock as it does shouty, fast music. Parts of it sound like they could’ve been written by a really angry Mogwai or Explosions In The Sky, if only you were to take away the raspy screamed vocals. This combination of styles is a difficult one to pull off, and Disembarked have hit the nail on the head. The emotional vocals work really well with the spacey, atmospheric music and they switch between the chaotic and the beautiful effortlessly and often.

I’m not even going to go into details analyzing each song or picking out favourites as this whole release is packed full of changes and highlights, all led by some fantastic drumming and clean, graceful guitar leads. Oh, and did I forget to mention that this five track EP lasts only eleven minutes?!!

Two days after deciding I would review this EP I realized they were playing at a small pub venue for Nai Harvest’s record release party, which I had already planned to attend without even knowing Disembarked were on the bill. One of only three UK dates and literally two minutes walk from my house! This band put so much into their live performance and left such an immediate impression on the crowd that they completely overshadowed the two supports that followed them. Take note – Disembarked are something special.

5/5 Stars

FFO: Birds In Row, Pianos Become The Teeth, Caravels, Raein

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