TANG recently released their third album, Dynamite Drug Diamond. TANG are a French post-hardcore band and they’re quite a novelty as they’ve been a band for over 16 years, have received all sorts of praise from major French media/press and although they sing in English they’re only now being introduced to English speaking territories. TANG are a special find for any fan of post-hardcore from the 2000’s.
Their newest album, Dynamite Drug Diamond, is at first a bit of a shock to the system. Their music sounds a little chaotic, lacking melodies and structure but after a few listens of the record, your opinion of them will certainly change.
Their post-hardcore sound compliments the screeching vocals which are similar to those of Tubelord. These superb vocals are heard at their best on the beginning track, Highway Encounter and third track, Paint It Black.
Track two, Run and Run and Die, sounds more gruesome than it is. The track starts off heavy with the drums sounding chaotic rather than rhythmic which isn’t an insult as it suits the song. Run and Run and Die introduces TANG’s spoken word poetry in the midst of this heavy track. It sounds like it wouldn’t work but it really does. The music gently subsides allowing the poetry to be the centre of the listener’s attention, “Shining on/Through the years/Forever strong/Let me explain…What do I feel…Tell me my name/” There’s never just poetry though, the guitar riffs and drum beat have been carefully constructed to add intensity and drama to the words.
Eve of Ceasefire Talks is a brilliant, dark and dramatic number on Dynamite Drug Diamond, starting with the lyrics, “We’ve been on watch for a while now/As the world turns/We’ve been kicking dirt/Some are drifting off/Some stay wide awake…” These lyrics are backed by a theatrical drum beat and guitar riff which all help to make this track particularly effective.
Hellissandur has a wonderful, rolling drum beat at the beginning. The guitars come in soon after but all the while, it’s the drums that grab your attention. They are unusual compared to the rest of the beats heard on the album. This is probably one of the most rhythmic and melodic tracks on Dynamite Drug Diamond despite it starting with spoken word.
TANG are great at mixing hardcore music and poetry in the right amounts to make their songs stand out. The music they create isn’t just post-hardcore, it’s deep with meaningful lyrics and beautiful poetry despite it’s tough exterior. There’s the right combination of songs – some are rougher than others, some are more thought-provoking and some are just plain rock with screeching vocals that you can enjoy when you’re in a bad mood. There are certainly no ballads or calming songs on Dynamite Drug Diamond but TANG have ensured that there is enough variation for the record to remain interesting.
Dynamite Drug Diamond is out now.