Dial: s/t MCD
The old expression "like a ton of bricks" doesn't even come close here. The weight of a mountain is what Dial drops on you with their absolutely crushing 5-song debut EP. The austere New Zealand outfit originally self-released this as a demo, but the material contained within is leaps and bounds beyond what most bands accomplish even at their best. Dial successfully channels the darkest corners of the AmRep catalog, the raw ferocity of classic hardcore, offtime kilter of math-rock, and the whole concept that music can actually be dangerous. The air-tight composure of Dial's debut recording is striking; focusing more on space and dissonance than technical shreddery. Obscenely heavy guitars collide with bludgeoning percussion and intense, vicious and scathing female vocals... turning the whole thing into a downright terrifying experience. Add an incredibly crisp recording, and this makes Dial's debut EP one of the most impressive demos in years, and sadly the only thing the band ever managed to release.