Oblong : Debut Releases

Oblong are an unashamed post-punk band from Llangennech; their own tangent is from the exact point when punk's first explosion of colour and energy was immediately followed by hugely diverse tense, angry, vivid music; if you want an immediate aural reference point to orientate yourself here, then you wouldn't be far wrong starting with Magazine's Shot by Both Sides.

They have released six songs (each with their own cover art), recorded at the abandoned Plas y Mwd, Llangennech - and they are all shaped by an irresistibly jagged assault of guitar underpinned by powerful low slung bass; a maelstrom used to frame blank-sung, desolate lyrics. Evident influences and roots to this there maybe, but it is no pastiche - Oblong have real, authentic power; their own list of inspirations includes the anarchist Max Stirner - there's thought, depth and commitment to what they are about.

Sung in both Welsh and English, of the six songs three really hit the mark: Lemon Tree is taut and fraught (and has a suggestion of the melodic sense, lyrical tone and frayed edge majesty of The Replacements); S'dim ots da fi starts with a nod to PiL (someone really ought to be shouting 'hello' over the Jah Wobble bass line that launches it) but then quickly offers a crashing great riff and rumbling drive; and Tunguska is fast, urgent - a rythmic, speeding night train of a song. Set against these three standouts the rest - Dehumaniser, Sant Max and Hold On - are sadly only a marvellous mix of new wave / post-punk / alt. rock.

Andrew Clement, Rob Daniels and Hyws Grav have formed a great band, with a perfect post-punk name; Oblong are loudly brilliant.


OBLONG I Tunguska