Irk – Recipes from the Bible (Review)

Irk - Recipes from the BibleIrk are a noise rock band from the UK and this is their debut album.

My first encounter with Irk was on their split with Wren, and it was a very favourable one. They have now returned with their debut album; 38 minutes of infectious chaos and barbed personality.

Angular, obtuse, and edgy, Irk’s music is the bastard offspring of noise rock, post-punk, and mathcore. In my previous review I compared them to a cross between bands such as Hawkeyes and Association Area with a bit of Sultans of Ping FC, and I think that largely stands, although the material on this album is even more developed than the tracks on their split.

Smashing genres and styles together into songs that sound like they’re stalking you through a cacophony of discarded instruments all being thrown at your head at the same time, Irk are impressively disorganised and coherent, seemingly at the same time. This apparent paradox isn’t one, of course, as the band know what they’re doing. Controlled mayhem and unorthodox structuring is the name of the game here, and Irk play it well.

With no guitar, this album is dominated by the bass. I like me a good bit of bass, and Recipes from the Bible is full of the stuff. Actually, maybe dominated isn’t the right word, as the drums hold their own and the singer – their wonderful, quirky singer – is constantly vying for your attention too. When the band truly lock into a twisted groove, each and every aspect of the music sounds as dominant as the others, so I suppose it’s all situation dependant. Regardless, Irk rock, and have produced an impressive and immersive slice of atypical unfriendliness.

Although not perfect, Recipes from the Bible is impressively individual and stands out as master of its own destiny and sound in a sea of generic clones.

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