WATERTANK – Destination Unknown
Post-hardcore, noise rock, alternative for sure – welcome to French quintet Watertank and their second full-length "Destination Unknown". Already a fixture on the domestic live front with an appearance at last year’s Hellfest plus touring with Torche and Membrane, their sound has that early 90’s jagged appeal. Remember when bands would use a little bit of flange or distortion a la U2 or Quicksand, then keep the vocals in that mid-range melodic meets hardcore manner- while the rhythm section just pounded out these solid rock tempos that make people jump and crash into each other? That’s what you feel most on these 9 tracks.
Sometimes very quick to the punch like the 1:51 "Surrender", other times more of a slow build in terms of atmospheric, echoing guitar lines like the 5 minute plus "Scheme". At other times the guitar tone and attitude coming from Bojan Anicic and Rémy Bellin contains propulsive angst tempered with classic swing appeal – The Cult meets Helmet for instance on the addictive opener "Automatic Reset". Watertank do not mess around in terms of set ups and transitions – a lot of the riffing and chemistry goes full force, even pumping out the bass in a low end frenzy for "Fever". The band can also be slower, somber, and semi-seductive on "DCVR", where vocalist Thomas Boutet slithers along in that hypnotic, alternative, post-hardcore melodic delivery- measuring his words and holding trailing verse notes carefully.
Considering this is my first exposure to the group, this 32 minute record is tightly constructed and properly executed. "Destination Unknown" should gain a decent buzz through a great cross-section of metal, hardcore, and alternative fans.