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ALBUM REVIEW


CRYWANK

‘FIST ME UNTIL YOUR HAND COMES OUT OF MY MOUTH’

Words by Kieran Cook
                   
Crywank’s final album is their most open and introspective and experimental project to date, which is saying something. Since their first album released a decade ago, ‘James is Going To Die Soon’ recorded solely by vocalist/guitarist James Clayton, the band haven’t shied away from topics surrounding depression, drugs, existentialism, and...eggs.

The first eight songs of the album form their own saga, parts I through VIII of ‘I Love You But I’ve Chosen Me’ act as an introspective into the bittered relationship between guitarist and drummer that has previously gone unseen; ‘All this confrontation is kept carefully preserved in our conversation, we fight back unobserved’. Although a majority of bands would shy away from being so open about their inner conflicts, Crywank bares all in a way that only they could, singing tales of gum disease, poison, and potatoes. This exposé of life inside of the internet’s favourite folk-punk duo is accompanied by familiar folk instrumentation by James, and rolling drums by Dan, and for the first time, both members serve vocal duties.

Although a majority of the album is retrospective in it’s lyrical content, sonically, ‘Fist Me Until Your Hand Comes Out Of My Mouth’ sees Crywank press forward with a variety of new sounds unheard of in their prior work. Although they stick to their trademark ‘Anti-Folk’ instrumentation the band are able to incorporate a variety of new sounds, including electric guitars, vocal distortion, reversed audio, and even 808s. From Wellington Wisp – Part I: On The Mill Floor until Egg on Spoon, we see the album become almost entirely electronically engineered, far from Crywank’s trademark bare bones acoustic instrumentation seen on their prior efforts; this is the band at their most experimental. (If I were to direct you to listen to at least one song on this project, it would be ‘Poo’, a 30 second track which will probably be the closest thing we get to a Crywank trap song).

By the end of the album, we are safely returned to familiar territory for the band, which is by no means a bad thing. ‘Cringey Wincer’ sees lyrical references to prior albums, with themes of childhood and self sabotage, which have peddled the bands prior work. The final song on the record, track 27, ‘Deep Down I’m Really Mark Smith’ (a reference to a song from their second project, ‘Deep Down I’m Really Kirk Van Houten’) isn’t just the end of the album, but the end of a 10 year era. Marking the end of the ‘heroes journey’ through 10 years of bitterness, identity crises, self hatred, and existentialism. Deep Down I’m Really Mark Smith violently reflects on everything that has brought us to this point over a decade of Crywank, before asking one final introspective question: ‘’Do I glorify what it means to be sad?’’.