The newest release from Gøggs, 2018’s Pre Strike Sweep, confronts the listener with a dizzying but beautifully unified array of musical themes. The band feels frenzied, taking the direct route to chaos and churning out energetic tracks like there’s nothing holding them back. Although there’s just a familiarly sized handful of people playing, the sound presents as if there are so many more. The sound feels dynamic to the point of being metaphorically alive on its own, you might say.
Calling them a punk or noise rock or just rock outfit wouldn’t do their sound justice. Gøggs blasts so intensely through their ideas that they feel as though they’re creating a sonic landscape in the process, which is no small feat for a band taking the stylistic approach they do. Soundscapes and noisy punk don’t always go together, but they’ve taken a core and exploded it outwards, drawing the listener into their twisted but inviting fantasy in the process.
Throughout the fantastic feeling record, the sound just never lets up. The band’s willingness to push boundaries, though, ensures that their sound isn’t exhausting in a strange twist. They’ve broadened their sonic approach instead of zeroing in on one particular concept that might take the listener’s attention away from their musical presentation at large. This music, in the end, is something a listener can get lost in. There are plenty of “secrets” hidden in its midst that will only pop out after repeated listening. Pre Strike Sweep is a record to turn on and let play over and over again.
It’s a wonderland of invigorating energy, delivering a nice jolt in the arm for those music listeners who might have grown bored with their selections. The band has cut deep, ironically going “underneath the noise,” in a sense, and letting the listener rest atop something new. They’ve blacked out the world around them through their hazy chaos and, through their obvious prowess and control as a band, crafted a new experience. Pre Strike Sweep is a snapshot of a brave new world for those into unique heavy music, taking them on a memorable ride.
Listen below, via Spotify. Photo via Denée Segal