Tritonic’s Algae Bloom is profoundly fringe music.
Tritonic is a London-based band. Their style is very hard to pin down, yet so easy… it’s noisy. Crossing over barriers, Tritonic make music that’s overly saturated with noise, overtly distorted, and unabashedly hard to listen to, and they do it so intentionally that it leaves no room for wondering if the band had any other ambitions with this selection of sounds, other that it being called extremely noisy.
With this edge comes a charm, though. The EP totals less than 11 and a half minutes, and spans 6 songs, which means that each noisy cut is short, condensed, focused, angry, and noisy, which alleviates the sharp edge of the endless noise and makes the project all that much more digestible. Algae Bloom starts with the title song, a 1-minute & 9 seconds banger that has a massive load of character, and perhaps some of the easiest to-grasp musical notions. With distorted synths in the background playing what can only be called a clear chord progression, with an intensely manic and disturbing vocal performance by Peter Jewkes that’s rapid, angry, and catchy. Roof To A Field is long, a little more than 2 minutes long, and during this time it goes through 4 different rhythms, and a couple of eloquent poems about roman deities. Dead By Thirty features extremely aggressive lyrics and a violent vocal delivery, backed by unhinged drums and riffs. A truly crazed experience that contrasted by a gentle backing vocal delivery by Victoria Bernard, the contrast making it sound alien and spooky. Deep River is only Bass and Drums, and both are clean and calm, behind peaceful lyrics and serene vocals. I found it hard to trust this calmness, and it felt incredibly tense, maybe because there’s a brooding sense of madness that’s almost comic to the imagery and the contradiction of the whole thing to the remainder of the music, or maybe it was all in my head.
I Want You to Know is pure, loving torture. With the howls of the vocals, the unsettling backing vocals, or the confusing arpeggios that muddy up whatever harmonic landscape there is. It also lasts more than 3 minutes… 3 minutes of intense distortion, violent vocals, and uncontrollable noise. 3 minutes is not much for a song, but for a song of this character, it felt like it was never going to end. The closer, Join A Union, is relatively conventional. A groovy number with a couple of chords, singing and a groove. The distortion on the guitar alleviates the tension that persisted on the previous calm cut, Deep River, making the song not feel out of place, just more calculated and less offensive.
Albums like Algae Bloom have the potential to change whole musical landscapes (That’s if you’re willing to call it an album. For me, it’s one prolonged composition that’s to be swallowed in one take, for the better or the worse). With the clear intention of minimizing the length of each cut, while increasing the noise output, thus maximizing their individual impact. A new direction that can prove promising in making Noise Rock and Alternative Metal reach new audiences whose ears simply can’t handle a lot of noise. Not for everyone, yet charming, promising, and unfortunately, very entertaining.