“Lost from the start; failed by the facts; you walk in defeated; wear out your weaknesses…”
- “Backlit,” KOWLOON WALLED CITY
Grievances is the forthcoming new full-length from San Francisco’s KOWLOON WALLED CITY. Set for release next month, the band’s first offering under the Neurot Recordings banner and third studio recording overall finds the eclectic collective at their artistic apex, shifting even further from their sludgy post-hardcore roots towards a sparser, more melancholic heaviness.
On the seven-track Grievances, strings rattle, guitars crackle and blister, notes ring out, at turns bleak and beautiful — sometimes both at once. Captured and mixed by vocalist Scott Evans at Sharkbite Studios and his own Antisleep Audio, both in Oakland, the recording is honest and spacious, and intense without artifice or studio trickery. Jeff Fagundes' drums resonate in a huge room while guitarist Jon Howell’s unusual chord changes and discordant aesthetic channel Unwound and Slint against Ian Miller’s gritty, melodic bass. Evans’ shouted vocals are raw with frustration and disappointment, but without the typical veneer of macho aggression.
Today, NPR offers the first chance to hear Grievances via its third track, “Backlit.” Evans explains, “This song pretty much sums up the record. It was the first song we started working on, and one of the last ones we finished. Coincidentally, it's about impostor syndrome -- no matter how hard you work at something, it's not good enough.”
Adds NPR: "In the first single, 'Backlit,' the band dials down the sludgy distortion in favor of more repetition. Loose strings rattle violently in riffs that aren't so much slow as weighted. Kowloon Walled City seems more aware of its space, rooting inside a shimmering cymbal, a throbbing bassline or a rare squeal of feedback instead of overpowering its sound with noise or studio compression. After guitarist Scott Evans shouts the devastating line, "You walk in defeated / Wear out your weakness," the guitar solo unwinds into a nervous, Unwound-ian abstraction that works out its catharsis in bent strings on the verge of bursting."
“Backlit” is currently available for public consumption at THIS LOCATION.
Following the release of Grievances, KOWLOON WALLED CITY will join Fight Amp for a short run of West Coast shows. Running from November 1st through November 7th, the trek includes an appearance at The Day of Shred Fest in Santa Ana as well as a specialGrievances record release show in Oakland.
KOWLOON WALLED CITY w/ Fight Amp:
11/1/2015 The Observatory - Day Of The Shred Fest - Santa Ana, CA
11/2/2015 Starlight Lounge – Sacramento, CA
11/3/2015 Obsidian – Olympia, WA
11/4/2015 The Shakedown – Bellingham, WA
11/5/2015 Highline – Seattle, WA
11/6/2015 Black Water - Portland, OR
11/7/2015 Golden Bull – Oakland, CA * Grievances Record Release Show
KOWLOON WALLED CITY formed in 2007 and has released an EP, Turk Street (Wordclock, 2008), and two full-length albums, Gambling On The Richter Scale (Perpetual Motion Machine, 2009) and Container Ships (Brutal Panda, 2012), as well as two splits. Among the bands it has shared stages with are Neurosis, Tragedy, Sleep, Thou, Coliseum, Zozobra, Fight Amp, Roomrunner, The Body, and Helms Alee.