Posts Tagged ‘Joe Casey’

Reissue alert! There are three formats for Protomartyr’s Debut album “No Passion All Technique” which was arguably one of the best releases in 2012 being re released in early May. The reissue has been long awaited ever since it’s original release, If you know you know, and Protomartyr’s debut is an album you need to know. Out of print basically from the moment it was released in 2012, it’s been but a whisper. Now hear the roar.

Frontman Joe Casey reflected on the album in a statement: My memory is shot, but I appreciate now, looking back, how raw and off-the-cuff it was. There’s tons of mistakes in it and that wasn’t because we planned on it. We still can’t really admit that it’s as good as it is. You never want to say that your first is the best, but I’m happy that the first ended up not being terrible. It gave us doorway to what we’d want to do later.

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protomartyr-spraypaint

Detroit’s Protomartyr and Austin’s Spray Paint toured together back in 2014 and, while on the road, hatched an idea to release a record where each band would record an instrumental, and then have the other band sing on it. Four years later, that idea has come to fruition on a split 7″, titled Irony Prompts a Party Rat, which will be out August 17th via Monofonus Press. We’ve got the premiere of “Corinthian Leather,” which features Protomartyr’s Joe Casey singing over Spray Paint’s music. It may bring to mind Ricardo Montalban and Chryslers for some out there. The 7″, which is part of Spray Paint’s collaborations series, is available in a few different collectable variations.

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Protomartyr released a new EP of their own in June.

Consolation EP

Detroit’s Protomartyr released yet another solid full-length in “Relatives In Descent”, just last year, but that doesn’t appear making the band interested in taking time off: The upcoming Consolation E.P. offers four new songs, and with a notable guest: Kelley Deal sings on two of them. Mike Montgomery, Deal’s R. Ring bandmate, recorded the EP, so enlisting the Breeders guitarist was an easy step. Her voice nicely counterbalances Joe Casey’s spoken-sung vocals, giving a little ray of lightness to Protomartyr’s frequently bleak, often discordant sound. So it’s settled: more Kelley Deal in everything.

Post-punks Protomartyr are following their acclaimed 2017 album Relatives In Descent with Consolation E.P., a new EP recorded in part with Kelley Deal of The Breeders and set for a June 15th release via Domino Recordings. Two of the EP’s four tracks feature Deal on vocals alongside Protomartyr lead singer Joe Casey, including the snarling track “Wheel of Fortune.”

Protomartyr release a new EP Consolation, which they recorded in part with friend Kelley Deal. Two of the four songs feature Deal on vocals alongside singer Joe Casey. The EP was recorded by Deal’s R.Ring bandmate Mike Montgomery and expandeds Protomartyr’s arrangements with strings and woodwinds.

The video for the Deal-featured track “Wheel Of Fortune” is five minutes of confusing chaos that I can’t turn away from. Directed by Yoonha Park, who handled the band’s also-strange “Don’t Go To Anacita” video, “Wheel Of Fortune” is an amalgamation of bleak, violent imagery paired with an equally jagged, experimental sound. A pulsing skull, a charging, electrified sword, a girl coloring in her entire face with cherry red lipstick, roughly scrapping your knuckle against a brick wall, punching yourself in the face, giving a thumbs up while your hand is on fire flash; these visuals grace the screen all while frontman Joe Casey and Deal repeatedly shout the lyrics “I decide who lives and who dies.” It’s a lot to handle, but aesthetically exciting.

The general vibe is spooky Halloween apocalypse. There’s a solace brought on as the video switches to black and white. The music slows and a hypnotic groove ensues. Though, all that is ended quickly by the chanting of “Hands around their own throats.”

Limited edition of the EP on yellow/white starburst vinyl, includes 12”x24” fold out poster, and MP3 download card.

EP Tracks

  1. 01. Wait
  2. 02. Same Face in a Different Mirror
  3. 03. Wheel of Fortune (feat. Kelley Deal)
  4. 04. You Always Win (feat. Kelley Deal)

Protomartyr – “Wheel of Fortune (feat. Kelley Deal)” taken from the new ‘Consolation E.P.’ out 15th June 2018 on Domino Record Co.

Protomartyr Relatives in Descent review

Protomartyr has never wanted for momentum. The Detroit band, at their best, has always been racing toward an endpoint, driven by a sense of urgency, outrunning some kind of unseen danger or darkness that’s constantly nipping at their heels, in the vapor trails behind Greg Ahee’s guitar riffs or in the pregnant pauses in Joe Casey’s personal narratives or commentaries. Protomartyr aren’t going to revolutionize guitar music. That’s a big ask for any rock band, where many acts are hyper-literate, fiercely political or formally adventurous — though the group possesses all of these strengths. Their consistency is ultimately what sets Protomartyr apart from the pack. Their development has been steady, as each new album broadened the scope and lyrical ambition of its predecessor. Relatives In Descent is a culmination of the band’s potential; they sound a career removed from the scrappy garage punks who released No Passion All Technique just four years ago, even as they remain snidely dissatisfied.”Casey’s sardonic lyrical humor. But most of all, it’s because Protomartyr never stops moving.

“A Private Understanding,” the opening track to the band’s fourth album Relatives in Descent, has a similar feeling to past Protomartyr openers—it’s perpetually on the brink of building up to something, and it feels tense and climactic. But it lingers on moments in a way that few of the band’s songs have before. The verses feel a bit more drawn out, with the first echoing the phrase, “Never wanna hear those vile trumpets anymore,” while the second track recounts a true story of Elvis Presley seeing the face of Stalin in a cloud: “He was affected profoundly, but he could never describe the feeling/He passed away on the bathroom floor.” By the end, Casey croons, “She’s just trying to reach you,” echoing a consistent theme of failed methods of communication and the complicated ways that people process those messages. As empathetically as these figures are drawn, they’re still mired in the fatalistic absurdity of never being able to say what needs to be said. Maybe she’ll never actually reach you; Elvis is dead on his bathroom floor.

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Relatives in Descent, illustrated by its unsettling opening track, is the darkest Protomartyr album to date because it’s so reflective of the time in which it was created. It’s not a political album, but rather a bleakly philosophical album of meditations on the fallible nature of truth and self-destructive ideals that brought us to an age of willful ignorance and “fake news.” Nobody gets off particularly easily here. Casey sneers mockingly throughout the sing-songy punk stomp of “Male Plague,” reminding the self-inflictedly mediocre white men at its core that “Everybody knows it’s gonna kill you someday.” In the brooding “Corpses in Regalia,” he barks, “Decent people don’t live like that,” laying down an indictment on wealth and excess, while the driving “Don’t Go to Anacita” condemns the exploitation inherent in privilege. Only “Up the Tower” actually addresses what sounds a lot like the president, himself, and “the hatred he brewed within us,” following up on an observation of a golden door with a violent command to “knock it down! knock it down! knock it down!” It’s the kind of catharsis that Protomartyr has always done well, dialed up to match the dreadful urgency of the moment.

Some of the darkest moments on the album are those that happen on a purely instrumental level, giving Relatives in Descent a gothic wash of blacks, grays and charcoals. Those hues are rendered brilliantly, their chilling tone resulting in the strongest batch of songs they’ve written to date. The opening riff of standout single “My Children” has a subtly eerie tone, creating an ominous passageway toward its unexpectedly catchy chorus. “Windsor Hum” chimes with a horror-movie-soundtrack riff, underscoring Casey’s reassurance, “everything’s fine,” with the sick-to-your-stomach feeling of knowing that it isn’t. And the reverb-laden sound of closing dirge “Half Sister” finds Protomartyr capturing the grimmest of post-punk gloom brilliantly.

In that final track, Casey says “truth is a half sister,” before looping back to an early refrain from the album, “she is trying to reach you.” In intercepting these communiqués, to better understand why humanity is sometimes doomed to reject truth, Protomartyr delves into some dark places albeit ones that yield their most rewarding results.

Protomartyr The Agent Intellect

Protomartyr: Total bias alert: Protomartyr’s “Under Color of Official Right” was among my top Albums of 2014 by a longshot. (Any band that sounds like Mark E Smith fronting a garage Chameleons…but from Detroit, is going to do it for me.) Their CMJ shows, all of which were great for different reasons: firstly they played two new songs at the Knitting Factory with tailored lyrics of “Tarpeian Rock”They also inspired a crazy pit at Death by Audio; and just basically blew the lid off the Cake Shop where frontman Joe Casey admitted “First time I was at Cake Shop they served Sparks. I got really drunk and yelled at Sean Lennon. Protomartyr – Why Does It Shake – Live in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, three bands came together for a pop-up show announced only days before,