Sunday, March 26, 2023

FIDLAR Release Their Latest EP ‘That’s Life’ Full Of Punch And Energy

Beach-punk band Fuck It Dog, Life’s A Risk a.k.a. FIDLAR release their long-awaited EP ‘That’s Life’. Safe to say, the band have returned from their three-year break with even more of the power, dynamicity, and sharpness that their fans know and love. 

This is the first lot of new music from the L.A. garage-rock group since their acclaimed album ‘Almost Free’ was released in 2019. Zac Carper, Brandon Schwartzel and Max Kuehn have produced an immaculate EP that has been worth the three years of patience. 

Opening song ‘Centipede’ is the perfect example of what FIDLAR’s sound is. The slower intro with clear-cut vocals builds into the classic American punk, heavy chorus full of guitar and drum noise. Of course, the common theme in FIDLAR’s music of drugs and alcohol is soon brought up within the song’s first few lines, but this time with a negative twist compared to the positive manner FIDLAR have used in the past. ‘‘I'm a narcissist and I need gnarly therapy, I'm sober, not even amphetamines’ indicates that this mood-altering drug has made him a ‘‘gnarly’’ person. 

‘On Drugs’ is the EP’s second track and it is certain that this is a genuinely jaw dropping cut. The fast and muffled sound of the guitar in the limelight with the brawny drums at the start of this song gives the listener a sense of anticipation for something ever bigger about to drop - and with the sample of Basement Jaxx’s ‘Where’s Your Head At?’, something big really does drop. The unexpectedness of this sample in the record adds so much energy and vigour to the track, and the sound warping segment towards the end of the song really makes this record four-dimensional. FIDLAR have managed to make a record sound trippy while also making you feel like you are something strong, a common topic of conversation in their lyrics.   

The next three songs on the record form FIDLAR’s single releases in this run of new music. ‘FSU’ was the single that announced the band’s return with the biggest bang of them all, full of heaviness and anger. The strong guitar playing along with the shouty vocals really make the listener feel the band’s anger in their thoughts and lyrics. The sheer amount of swear words in this song is the perfect example of this.  The opening line to this song is ‘‘I've been wakin' up, gettin' so fucked up’’ and if that doesn’t express aggravation, I don’t know what does.  

This already unbelievable EP’s fourth track is a single released last year called ‘Sand On The Beach’, bringing a more indie sound than other FIDLAR records which progresses into a more post-punk bang. ‘Taste The Money’ follows, with its ever changing rhythm and speed keeping the listener hooked. One of the best lines from this EP features in this song: ‘‘Am I tripping or is this trip tripping me?’’, a sincere piece of writing compared to many of their other lyrics. 

‘That’s Life’ is the perfect closer to FIDLAR’s masterpiece record. It is full of everything we love about the band: relatable lyrics, speedy drums, obvious guitar riffs, and angry vocals finalise this journey of post-punk perfection.   

The only problem with this EP is that it isn’t long enough.   

Alice Mason  

@alicemxson  / @alicegoestogigs  

Image: ‘That’s Life’ Official EP Cover  

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