Face Command: Listen to This Shit

Face Command EP

Sydney band, Face Command, deliver a lurid, apocalyptic, surreal soundscape which is highly recommended, says Elfy Scott: 

As a writer, it’s an incredibly rare and rewarding experience when you’re designated a film or album that you genuinely enjoy– it’s like happening upon a nugget of gold in a sackful of pretentious indie potatoes. As a person, it’s even rarer that I should discover a record so outrageously good that I feel compelled to write about it, but that is precisely what has happened here. And therefore the following is titled “Face Command: Listen to This Shit”.

Face Command are a shambolic amalgamation of some great Sydney musicians, each belonging to various bands that are notable in their own right (lead singer Tyler occasionally fashions himself as his upstanding alter ego, MC Filth Wizard, aka ‘the whitest rapper alive”, paints himself entirely white, dons a dazzling grill and improvises entire sets in some chaotic Wu Tang-style bullshit. It is truly a fucking spectacle). The diverse influences of the band members are chaotically reflected in the record that they have produced– where genres are fused to create music that is almost entirely indefinable and very, very interesting (which I use in the truest sense of the term– as opposed to the “interesting” that is generally adopted as a socially-acceptable form of saying “that was some proper fucking nonsense”).

The seven-track record launches with the completely brilliant “Bullet in the Sky”, a track described by the band themselves as “the best damn prison song ever written in Newtown”– which is a fair assessment. It sounds pretty much exactly like a three-minute montage of a Tennessee bar fight scene. The winding guitar, thrashing drums and gruff vocals make for an intense combination. It is stupidly infectious and – rather like those four months I got really heavily involved in watching American Dad – kind of drove me to insanity in a really pleasurable way. That riff just does not fucking go away.

From the second track onwards, Face Command dive into some kind of lurid, apocalyptic surreal soundscape, reminiscent of such great musical head-case acts as Primus and the Butthole Surfers. The blend of consistently engrossing guitar, some bizarrely stilted drum lines, heavy bass distortion, and vocals that tend to sound rather like a rowdy psychopath trying to coax you into a van make for a bizarre and amazing sound experience. Honorable mention to “I Slipped In” for sounding like the kind of number that you can twist about to in a dance hall… with a strong likelihood of molestation (unsurprising for a song literally about a stalker breaking into your room and hiding under your bed). “Francois Got a Bird in His Mouth” should also be mentioned as an unrelentingly bizarre track that sounds rather like coming down after a night of amphetamines and attempting to watch the news– it’s strikingly uncomfortable.

Face Command’s debut album is pretty much persistently mind-blowing, well worth a listen, and available for download at Bandcamp.

They are playing their album launch with Sydney’s amazing Plight of the Mystical Dugongs and Black Island May 10th at Newtown’s drunkest stomping grounds, the Town Hall Hotel, and I highly recommend going along to witness the rowdy bullshit ensue.

elfy scott


Face Command review by Elfy Scott.