HAU are a noise-rock, abrasive-core, band from Greece. The sound behind these guys is one of angered percussion, destructive guitar, ugly vocals and brief dabbles in electronic elements, such as synth work and sampling (?). Put all of this together and you get a very cut-throat act that refuses to pander to any strict structure or reason. Back in May of this year, HAU put out their first EP, which was also a self-titled EP and these are my thoughts on said EP:
The animalistic nature behind HAU is very comparable to that of bands like Lightning Bolt, with their incomprehensible, heavily effected, lyrics, jagged stringed instruments and pounding percussion – everything is just GO, from the start with both these bands. When HAU are playing to their strengths, they are incredibly effective and satisfying to listen to, especially when you enjoy the moaning guitar as much as I do. However, there is still a rather diverse selection of sounds on this EP – both Pattern 5 and Pattern 7, are messy noise-rock charges on your ears, but the other two tracks are much more experimental.
Cunts & Needles (with A†D) is a slow boiling track that slithers around with some sporadic drumming and some almost alien-like vocals. Oh, and the way, these alien-like vocals don’t just occur on this track, they’re a persistent presence throughout, which is fine, they suit the style of music perfectly. But yeah, the track itself fiddles with various electronic improvisations that feel very unsettled at times, as they just flicker around with the occasional percussion – It’s a difficult track to pin down. By the end though, it’s just as loud and proud as the Pattern tracks.
These Pattern tunes are my favourite tracks on this release, without a shadow of a doubt. The guitars a bass sounds on Pattern 5 and Pattern 7 are incredible and the way that they take no prisoners with their approach to their music, is just phenomenal. If you enjoy vicious sounding… everything, you need to listen to these songs, they are ruthless and unforgiving – the way this sort of music should be.
Norma, is also a hard track to strip down to something more than, ‘experimental’ and ‘woah’. It’s probably the most eccentric track on the album, mainly because it starts out so deceptively quiet, with brief flickers of drums and synth screeches, with some very sudden and haunting stabs of synth latter in the track. But then, halfway through the track unrolls completely into a real horror of intimidating vocals, primal beats and more stabs. Norma is probably the most fidgety track on this release, it just can’t sit still for more than three minutes!
What HAU have done with this release is set a very chilling bar for themselves that will lead to, hopefully, more music that’s as angry and powerful as this.
HAU’s self-titled EP is everything that you’re afraid of listening to and proud of it. It’s malicious sounding songs are immediate and have a forceful staying power and if you like any kind of hard music, then you should check these guys out.