Florida’s finest “sludge pop” practitioners are back with album number five – although this one seems a little lighter on the sludge, and heavier on the pop, than its predecessor, 2015’s Restarter.
Admission opens with a fast-paced flourish on “From Here,” a 99-second sonic assault on which chugging riffs contrast with soaring clean vocals. “Submission” has almost more of a goth/industrial feel, with both the riffs and vocals reminding me of Nine Inch Nails. Pre-release single “Slide” gets my head-nodding right away, with a fuzzy clean riff and melodic vocals befitting of the “sludge pop” sobriquet. “What Was,” another sub-two-minute number, is driving by a riff that sounds like some vintage punk running into a brick wall, and coming to a crashing stop. It’s surprisingly effective.
At a shade over five minutes, “Times Missing” is one of the longest, slowest songs on this album. With that said, the overall effect is less sludge, and more 90’s grunge – not entirely a bad thing. The four-minute title track continues along at a similar pace, but with a riff that wouldn’t sound outta place on a Joy Division or The Cure record. (The chorus is all about “I don’t need to love again,” adding bonus goth points.) On the other hand, the plodding, gear-grinding “Reminder” is pure sludge pop, with a killer stoner/doom riff and a slight nod to the Melvins, while “Extremes of Consciousness” has shades of latter-day Matt Pike in its meaty verses before “On the Wire” and “Infierno” end things on a slow ‘n heavy note. More of a mixed bag than their last one, but when they bring it, they definitely still bring it.