GagReflex – The Forthcoming ‘A Mouthful Of Marbles’.
What do you think of when you think of Cheltenham? Having never been I only really know it as the place near to Gloucester and for better or for worse, that’s the limit of my knowledge. Or it was…
GagReflex are two-piece Punk-Rock band that like many in the genre have done away with the genre’s ironic constraints (that is not necessarily a criticism) instead opting for a simple bass and drums formula. This formula is itself nothing new but is also something not fully explored, with uncharted variety still ripe for implementation.
This is exactly what the two men that collectively formed this abrasive yet oddly beckoning unit have set out to do with their forthcoming debut full-length, A Mouthful Of Marbles.
‘Saying anything ruins everything, why say anything at all, anything at all’ are the closing words of a track that bluntly attacks contemporary forced complacency in its obvious and subliminal form. Musically you immediately notice the almost Industrial drone of the the lone bass guitar cutting harshly in contrast with the melodic strongly accented vocals.
‘Earth Fault Develops’ and ‘My Disregards’ are two of three that have been slowly leaked from the full album for the bandcamp pre-order. The former is another with a socio-political punch and rumbles long with that Industrial-ism and a likening to Post-Punk not far behind. The latter of the two is well-laden with hooks while singing about the hooks we ourselves are either bombarded with or are dragged along by.
‘Inside/Inspite’ cuts the tempo but compensates in its lyrical intensity, while ‘What Can Change The Nature Of A Man’ could almost be compared to something from Steady Diet Of Nothing from the Post-Hardcore veterans, Fugazi.
Track six is entitled ‘Black Start’ and reignites the pace from the earlier tracks for its majority before giving said tempo a swift kick in its latter stages. By this point in the release the mid and slower tempos, as dark and playful as they are becoming the norm and with this brief burst of speed you are provided with a reprieve of sorts.
‘Safety Third’ sends your mind back to the fuzzy Nirvana debut Bleach in its opening but then you are greeted again by the GagReflex brand melodies that probably shouldn’t work but almost certainly do. ‘Standard goals for standard guys‘.
‘Faith Like A Jackal’ breaks in with distorted Big Black-esque breakdowns before evidence of the band’s knowledge of Punk-Rock provides you with anther up-tempo melodic Punk chorus. ‘Faith Like A Jackal’ is chaotic in it’s progressive Punk and is testament to the not-so refined two-piece formula.
The riff-laden and more melodic approach this album has taken by ‘Boiler’ sat at position nine adds balance to the release as a whole. The disjointed themes and attack on modern confines is all the more hard hitting by this stage and any real confusion or doubt on your opinion on the record is almost completely pushed out. ‘Boiler’ is perhaps the best on the release and leaves you wondering, if not slightly apprehensively, on how this from heart to sound album is going to end.
And on that note, the worry was unfounded but I’ll leave you to find out why when the album is released, so mark the 27th January in your diaries and find the band, their music and the pre-order below:
- For updates on GagReflex head to Facebook and Twitter.
- The bands music to date can be found bandcamp where you can also pre-order the new album on both digital and hardcopy CD.
- The new album will also be available from iTunes and Spotify upon release.
- This is the band’s first release alongside Secret Chord Records who can be found on Facebook, Twitter and their Official Website.