Reviews Spokenest Gone, Gone, Gone

Spokenest

Gone, Gone, Gone

I have a type, and it’s short and fast. I’m partial to it and probably less picky. It fills a need that my constantly fidgeting digits and bottomless coffee mug cannot. Besides, short and fast is just better. Duh.

Spokenest are seemingly built on that same concept, playing finger-bleedingly fast guitar and drum in this husband-wife two-piece from California. On Gone, Gone, Gone, their second LP (following 2013’s We Move), the songs are slightly longer. Three of the twelve exceed three minutes and two more come within seconds of the marker. But Spokenest’s strengths really rely in fast, frantic, and an almost ADHD sound that delivers a quick blow and moves on to the next thing. It’s all connected and structured, but Spokenest don’t mess around in their songs much. There’s a lot of call and response vocalizing and punchy choruses without dreary repetition. It’s Pinhead Gunpowder pacing, but pepped up on caffeine and without the melodic chorus core. Stripped down punk rock at its primal and basic level, relying on emotion, fury, and frustration.

That said, Gone, Gone, Gone does feature fewer call and response vocals than their first LP and the band is varying the sound more, dropping choppy and disjointed musical breaks in between their fast paced verses. The instrumental chops aren’t my favorite parts of the record and it slogs a bit when they do it mid-song, as in “Whisper” or “Sense.” It’s not to say it doesn’t work when the band mixes it up, though. “Shine” gives a needed breather with its slower opening, while Adrian’s vocals in “Tell Me” display an impressive melodic delivery when she opts to sing versus shout. This track is sort of a punk rock ballad that accelerates in tempo as it progresses, culminating in a second/third act of rising action and shout-out vocals that hit the spot. Between the record’s final two songs, “Tell Me” and “Reasons,” there’s a strong hint that Spokenest’s attention spans may be getting a bit longer and, for all the claims I’ve personally made about preferring short and to the point, I’ll embrace anything that continues that trajectory.

The catch with bands that operate at Spokenest’s pace is they often get samey over a dozen songs, and a two-piece is more vulnerable to that. On Gone, Gone, Gone there the band overcomes those limitations and delivers a varied and frantic record that runs the adrenaline without leaving you exhausted after the fact.

7.7 / 10Loren
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7.7 / 10

7.7 / 10

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