I’ve always been a casual 1994! fan. My decidedly undedicated listening habit is not at all due to a dislike for their sound. In fact, they’re a group that makes me jive every time I hear them…
Some bands, I feel, are just best enjoyed through intermittent sampling instead of continual replay—maybe this serves as a subconscious way to avoid tiring of a group, because I certainly don’t want that to happen with 1994! But even though I’m not constantly spinning their records, I can definitively say there are a lot of unique and uncharacteristic, yet, exciting, things going on with 1994!’s newest release Fuck It.
Yes, there are still semi-discernible vocal parts, raw-as-hell rhythms and all-around-gnarly, uber-creative guitar licks abound—don’t worry folks. This is not a snapshot of the entire album though. In fact, it would be a mistake to dismiss this album as just another band making another attempt at writing songs with “sweet parts.”
The first thing worth noting about this album is that it was recorded on an iPhone, according to 1994!’s Bandcamp. This explains Fuck It’s extremely rough sound. At times, this does detract from one’s ability to appreciate the album. I mean, it’s always nice to listen something that sounds clear and crisp.
However, Fuck It’s questionable sound quality doesn’t make it impossible to enjoy. Actually on the tracks ‘untitled 1′ and ‘untitled 2′, which are layered, fully instrumental, and somewhat dissonant compositions, the roughness makes sense.
The other thing that’s definitely worth noting about Fuck It is that it’s meant to be one coherent composition—and it is, in my opinion. The songs flow and fit into one like an inexplicably complex jigsaw of fragmented emotions that piece themselves together through ever-changing feels. Fuck It somehow manages to simultaneously have sensible continuity, yet be completely schizophrenic. The songs ‘i, i, i, me, me, me’ and ‘from decay’ are completely different—the first one riffs on many well-established 1994! motifs, while the latter is a somber, down-tempo soliloquy to self-loathing—but they make sense together despite only being separated by slightly over six minutes.
The final track, “non multa, sed multum,” (not many, but much) perfectly sums up the album and 1994! as a band for me—both in terms of its thematic musicality and overall message. Because that’s what 1994! is—a band that creates walls of sound and emotion with only two members.
I think it’s important to keep the album’s title in mind when listening to it. Fuck It doesn’t try to be anything other than what it is. Because fuck it.
Buy Fuck It right now and name your price @ 1994withanexclamationpoint.bandcamp.com
Stay in contact with 1994! HERE
Photo: Jonathan Minto
Words by Andy Holsteen