by Kris Handel (@khandel84)
Poison Future is the debut full length from Canadian noise-punk quartet Protruders, and it delivers some crafty songwriting and constantly moving dirty grooves. This record comes on the heels of a handful of lo-fi tapes of radio sessions and other ephemera over the past few years, that have shown a rough and tumble aesthetic. Protruders manage to vary their sound and take the tried and tested into some new territories with varying tempos and a looseness to their instrumental approaches that proves they aren’t afraid to throw a curveball every now and then into the mix. There is a sense everything is about to fall apart from exhaustion in each of these songs, but thankfully Protruders remain standing at the end.
“Poison Future” starts the record off in a nervous little jumble of sharp staccato leads and careening rhythm work that recalls a little bit of early Fall, but with even more acidity and spittle in the vocals. Protruders bring along some skittering keyboards and skronking distortion to create a cloud of unending tension fueled noise to full effect. “Wrong Way Sign” is in the mode of Stooges (or Rocket from the Tombs) - straight from the garage proto-punk that is extremely welcome in this day and age. Here Protruders prove themselves more than efficient in setting a tempo and finding new paths to explore with varying guitar solos ranging from the hypnotic to sharp shards over propulsive bass drum.
Poison Future has roots in the past, but this quartet manage to mix and match styles so efficiently there is no mundanity here. The songwriting is also superb and the looseness throughout the record lends itself to a breezing and delightful listening experience. There’s a lot to recommend on this short record (7 songs, 25 minutes), but the way Protruders run the gamut from garage-punk (The Saints influenced “No Stone” is fantastic) to frantic and rampaging on the verge of collapsing punk (title track and “Stabilizer”) is always enthralling. This record just has an infectious energy to it that doesn’t dissipate, it’s a bit of a kick in the teeth and one that will surely give the listener a surge of adrenaline as well which is quite welcome.