SIMON GRAB & FRANCESCO GIUDICI
by Toon Traveller
Simon Grab & Francesco Giudici's No Surrender requires... Concentration. Its challenging minimalist sensibilities can appear uneventful, but stay with it. The rewards are in the the slow build and enveloping sense of mystery. No Surrender is full of naturally dark spaces, a ventablack of suspense, undefined threats, shadows, hints of light. Although 99.964% of all light here is absorbed not reflected.
Grab & Giudici have an indefinable, carefree disregard for music's traditions, (real rebellion music as opposed to the rasping strangled vocals that pass a traditional ranting rage). They are torn by environmental destruction. It is in every note. Every buzz.
Looking at a lot of the reviews, I suspect getting most readers to listen, really listen will be a hard hard sell, but it's a magnificent slab of post-Germanic, post-industrial, post pandemic, pre-environmental apocalypse, electronica post-Fordism electronica. The sounds do disturb as they should, this is serious music for critical issues. And no you probably won't find yourself whistling the melody later.
There's a slow build through buzz, fizz and fuzz, it sparks and sizzles as it moves through the left behind places, factories, places, people, lives. This is not a happy slice of the 2020's but a wedge of fear and suffering. This the only music left in a world where rap, hard core, and thrash metal and all the rest have died in the freezing social wasteland of despair No Surrender music invokes. This is pain and suffering, waste and decline. For the UK, for music, for places left behind, by the places left behind. For the States, it's the S/T to the embryonic future inhabitants rising in the Rust belt abandoned, it is inhumanity, it is a plate from an HR Giger tome, it is the slow death of hope, and the cold reality of a coming collapse that's haunts us all. It is the sums of fears.
That said, the last moments of calm are something of a restoration a resurgence of nature, delicate flutter of wings, hinting at a survival of sorts, offering the hope that makes the pain worthwhile, suggesting there is redemption after all. Five hearts but they are not love happy hearts, but the hearts heavy with despair and regret.
No Surrender is available now from Bandcamp and elsewhere