EP Review: Twin Brook / Dog Stuff – ‘Deathmatch’

Posted: by The Editor

There’s a sense of playfulness in calling the new split between Rhode Island pop-punk groups Twin Brook and Dog Stuff something like Deathmatch. The Xs that adorn the sides of the title, and the font of the title, might prime listeners for a burst of furious hardcore; instead, Deathmatch is a rough-around-edges slice of punk infused with all the devil-may-care attitude of its title, one where each band brings their best but never manages to outdo the other.

Twin Brook’s half begins solemnly, the ring of a soft guitar signaling the start of “AS220.” The song builds for about two minutes until the tension comes to a head and spills over and it comes clear that this is no twinkling emo EP; the chunky hook–”if I gave you a moment!”–is a much more accurate taste of what’s to come. The following five minutes pass by in a galloping haze; there’s a helping of melodic hardcore grit in the other two songs Twin Brook bring to the table.

“Crackemo” throws the listener right into Dog Stuff’s crunchy, garagey punk sound from the first; they slow things down a bit on the succeeding “Nicked Out Nicely,” something of a suite for the project, dipping into slow, off-kilter space rock before a skate punk coda leads into the Lookout! Records throwback “Song 3.” Dog Stuff is clearly more content to just rock out than Twin Brook, but the detour at the end of “Nicked Out Nicely” provides a nice respite from the otherwise breakneck pace of their half.

The EP does, impressively, maintain a sense of cohesion across its brief runtime, both bands’ sounds melding well enough to establish a consistent mood. It’s charmingly lo-fi, too–not to point of sounding grating, but anymore polish would make things sound a little too pristine. It’s an impressive offering for both bands, a solid foundation that leaves enough room to explore a variety of routes each. The future’s bright for Twin Brook and Dog Stuff.


Disappointing / Average / Good / Great / Phenomenal

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

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