Review: Deafkids/Gum Takes Tooth – Split EP

As of late, I’ve been more focused on artists of a post-black metal/goth-rock/post-punk/industrial persuasion, all of which means I have regretfully lost track of God Unknown Records more recent output. To put it into context, the last one of theirs I reviewed was back in April and was grindcore/hardcore outfit Dead Neanderthals latest Rat Licker, even then they were only one of nine labels who released it, meaning it wasn’t exclusive to them. This unintentional hiatus ended when I was afforded the opportunity to review this Deafkids/Gum Takes Tooth Split. Well, anyone who knows me and my adoration for Deafkids will not be shocked that I barely paused for breath and pounced on it as soon as possible.

Deafkids/Gum Takes Tooth - Split

There weren’t a lot of promo notes on offer, but Jason Stoll from God Unknown described the Deafkids side as ‘like an electro Discharge. It’s brilliant’. While Gum Takes Tooth (with Wayne Adams) was recorded at a Moog workshop at Supersonic. Really takes you somewhere’. Sounds promising.

Deafkids are an experimental d-beat/noise rock/punk/sludge-metal etc band from Volta Redonda, Rio De Janeiro in Brazil who since their 2010 formation have been constantly evolving musically. They’ve been acclaimed by the likes of Neurosis’ Steve Von Till, Maggot Heart’s Linnea Olsson and they’ve released material on the Neurot Recordings and Rapid Eye Records labels respectively. The latter in fact released the split Live At SESC Pompéia with fellow Brazilians Rakta which I reviewed back in May, while Neurot issued the superb Metaprogramação which made my Top Ten of 2019, see what I mean about being just a little bit of a fan?

a heavy electro pulsating beat…

So, what about the track then? Well, it’s called Psy Op and that name refers to psychological operations, a distinctly US style method of conveying ‘selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning, and ultimately the behaviour of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals’ (Wikipedia). I’m fairly certain I’ve heard it described as psychological warfare as well. Jason was correct in his aforementioned assertion that there is a Discharge influence to the track, Deafkids have been taking inspiration from that band since their genesis. The track also features a heavy electro pulsating beat with samples(?) thrown in, all of which make for a truly exciting soundclash.

Gum Takes Tooth is a London-based duo composed of percussionist Tom Fug and keyboardist and vocalist Jussi Brightmore who combine psych rock, noise rock, and electro. To date, they’ve put out three full-length albums of which 2019s Arrow is the latest. This is my first exposure to the band who team up here with Wayne Adams of Petbrick (who coincidentally released a joint album with Deafkids in 2020 under the name Deafbrick). The track titled Servitude is all blips and weird Moog noises that remind one of Kraftwerk’s Radio-Activity, a pivotal release that saw that band evolve from the lengthier krautrock sounds of their earlier material to the more electronic orientated output they would become renown for. An interesting track which should appeal to fans of vintage electronic music.

all blips and weird Moog noises that remind one of Kraftwerk’s Radio-Activity…

Even for a release as short as this (it was only a split single after all), I was impressed by the music offered by the two differing yet complementary artists. In the tradition of all the great split releases I’ve reviewed, this afforded me the confirmation of my love for one artist (Deafkids) and my introduction to another (Gum Takes Tooth). Recommended listening for fans of either or both band(s).

Label: God Unknown Records
Deafkids: Facebook | Bandcamp | Instagram
Gum Takes Tooth: Facebook | Bandcamp | Twitter | Instagram

Scribed by: Reza Mills