Institute have taken large amounts of influence from the late ‘70s and early ‘80s U.K. anarcho punk and post-punk bands, and then mastered that sound, resulting in a great ten-song LP that sounds straight out of England, 1980. I wanted to get a different opinion on this record before I wrote this review, so I asked a friend who is very knowledgeable about contemporary bands but has never really listened to any anarcho punk stuff like Crass or Crisis (two bands which seem to have possibly influenced Institute the most) to see what she thought of this record. Her responses were interesting, and really helped me see this record in a completely different light. “This kinda sounds like Protomartyr with a less confident vocalist,” was her response to the first track, referring to the great Detroit band of recent years. Additional comments and comparisons were also interesting, with references made to a wide variety of bands, including longtime L.A. post-punk band SavageRepublic, Siouxsie And The Banshees, and even the experimental krautrock band, Can. While I don’t necessarily think that Institute sound exactly like any of these bands (although I do admit the Protomartyr comparison was pretty astute), I can see where she was coming from in each instance. This is a record that sounds like something else without sounding like a clone, which is hard to get right. Institute have done this perfectly, creating a modern record with a vintage sound that should be in the collection of every fan of the genre.
–Mark Twistworthy (Sacred Bones, sacredbonesrecords.com, [email protected])