United Nations - The Next Four Years - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

United Nations - The Next Four Years

by Greg Spencer Rating:6 Release Date:2014-07-21

For the record, the new release from ex-Thursday frontman Geoff Rickly's ultra-powerhouse of a group United Nations is a heavy one. Well in truth, heavy isn't really an appropriate description; in order to understand just how earth-shatteringly destructive this band sound then you have to actually this album. I'll be honest, this difficulty makes reviewing the band's album quite a tough job but what is certain is that these guys aren't here to fuck around.

 

Case in point, opening number, 'Serious Business', which acts as the catalyst and marker for the rest of the record in terms of heaviness and straight-to-the-point aggression. The music simply does not let up. If you make the same mistake as me in having the volume on your speakers at full blast then prepare yourself for possible tinnitus and a headache more hard-hitting than scenes straight out of Gaza.

 

As Rickly repeatedly screams the line “This is serious business”, there's no alternative but to believe the guy. Three minutes of unashamed noise pollution certainly demonstrates United Nations are serious as hell. If nothing else, that is a quality to admire in a peripheral screamo outfit such as theirs.

 

The next track, 'Meanwhile in Main Street', begins in a much more relaxed fashion. Dear God, we can actually hear the guitar-lines! A minute in, however, and things descend once more into the anarchy this group quite obviously thrives on. You can just imagine the sheer carnage that would ensue at one of their live shows, not that they actually play live often enough for anyone to get a hold on their concert antics.

 

There are so many influences at work here. This isn't a surprise considering how many people have been associated with United Nations over the years, with members of Converge and Glassjaw allegedly featuring in the past. The fact that this record sounds relatively similar to these bands as well as Thursday, Underoath and others isn't a shock.

 

The issue with The Next Four Years is that it feels like the band are screaming and shouting their political and ideological messages so loudly that, ironically, said messages get lost within the haze of violent non-melody and blistering sonic boom. A song like 'Fuck the Future' is a prime example; the title seems infantile but you might suspect there may be some kind of deep message lying beneath. However, when you give it a listen it just feels like a drunk puking up a bunch of ideas rather than actually putting their points across effectively.

 

Give the album a listen, not because there is anything profound here but because Geoff Rickly and co deserve some kind of audience. Just don't go expecting this to be the next classic metal/screamo/punk/whatever record as you'll be crushingly disappointed.    

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