When intrigue and intensity go hand in hand with raw spirit and thick enterprise rock music makes for a compelling companion and evidence of the such is boldly found within the debut album from Danish outfit Me & Munich. It offers ten tracks soaked in adventure and fuelled by energy, each in turn shaped by open craft and carrying a gripping enticement in the now amidst potential for even greater moments ahead vas the band explores and evolves its compelling sound.
Aarhus hailing, Me & Munich emerged in 2018, created by vocalist/guitarist Jan Steiniche after the demise of his previous band, noise punks Shocking White. A search for “a new sound and direction” triggered the move and sparked the melodic noise rock bred incitement which roars within Me & Munich and first album Gaslighting. The trio released well-received EP, Knives of the sun, via ScreamLite Records their first year, an encounter which certainly raised the appetite for their full-length as it presented a sound bred in a fusion of noise and alternative rock, grunge, punk and melodic imagination; a tapestry honed into rich individuality.
A subsequent line-up change saw lead guitarist Michael Tagesen and bassist Jonas Eik Borja alongside Steiniche and soon led to a collection of songs which make-up the instantly captivating Gaslighting. With the parting of ways with their drummer just three weeks before recording, Me & Munich may have had doubts about having the album completed but its producer, Andreas Linnemann (Baest, Nicotine Nerves), stepped up and swung the rhythmic sticks across its rousing body.
The album gets off to a heady start with opener Radical, a track which immediately sizzles on ears before quickly unleashing a heavy groove shedding flumes of sonic enticement. The contagiousness of the trespass is irresistible, Steiniche’s vocals just as magnetic as they swing upon the thick threads cast by the guitars while rhythms invade as they arouse in matching virulence. As punk lined as it is breathlessly noisy and melodically captivating, the track is akin to a blend of early Therapy?, Foo Fighters, and Shevils and a snare to greater attention.
Peace Of My Mind follows, it too offering an individual tease for which keen curiosity is the only response before launching a maybe less ferocious proposal compared to its predecessor but one which entangles melodic vines and infectious lures around the imagination. It too has outbreaks of physical ferity and an increasing psyche twisting prowess in tone and word which similarly ignited the senses whilst furthering the suggestion of diversity which soon shapes Gaslighting.
At the same time Me & Munich also show themselves seriously adept at casting hooks and melodies which get under the skin, next up Rainbow Attack a prime example as it croons and hollers with craft and invention. Again guitars spin a web of eager enticement aligned to rapacious riffs, their appetite and fertility more than matched by bass and drums in their rhythmic inducement. It is the melodic intimation which seduced most, not for the first or last time within the album finding a flavouring which reminded of eighties band, The Mighty Lemon Drops.
The following Searching For Something spreads the diversity of the band’s sound again, its heart bold rock ‘n’ roll but shared with a progressive hue as catchy as it is suggestive not forgetting increasingly addictive while The Worst In Me is an acoustically nurtured ballad which just grows in stature and vigour as well as pull by the second. Both songs had ears gripped though were soon eclipsed by the skilled invention and increasing clamour of Whatever Comes My Way, another track which had us harkening back to the aforementioned eighties outfit especially in its jangle and chorus. Even so its own character is dominant and baited eager attention.
Both Ambient Abuse, with its fertile mix of noise spiced hard and alternative rock, and Gaslighting Pleasure, courtesy of a garage meets feral rock collusion, boldly increased the enjoyment of the release. As with all tracks, they offer moments which truly hit the spot with lusty uniqueness and persistently had pleasure aroused; a varying but consistent success throughout Gaslighting.
The album concludes with firstly Pain Goes Away With Silence, a track which had us won over with its initial grumbling bassline and the calmer but no less dramatic and enthralling adventure which followed, and finally Right Shoulder Devil. The closer is a thumping slice of punk infused rock ‘n’ roll, a track which embraces decades and diversity of rock to create its own ferocious yet atmospherically haunting roar.
Though there are moments which outshone others from start to finish, Gaslighting had ears and imagination hooked and greedy for more, its potential suggesting that future ‘more’ will be even more striking and explosive than this rather fine encounter.
Gaslighting is out now; available @ https://meandmunich.bandcamp.com/releases with its vinyl release via Cloudy Water Records.
Pete RingMaster 13/08/2020