This split is like when your best friend becomes your lover. Sometimes you get really lucky and don’t have to choose one or the other, you get both. In 2013, these bands released two of my favorite records of the year—Screens and The Constant One, respectively. So, getting new tracks from these two on the same release is like magic. Two tracks appear from each group, but in a format I’ve never seen before: each side has one from each band. What I took for creative, and mold-breaking, is more of a logical decision, as Iron Chic’s songs are at least twice as long as Low Culture’s. At first, it’s a little jarring to have a quick switch between the two. Iron Chic bursts through the speakers with a fast-paced melodic ballad, and, after a few minutes of punk rock lullaby, Low Culture breaks that relaxing calm with bright guitar work that really shines through. Once you get to Side B, this formula is more familiar, and the closing songs are a lot stronger. “Subhumanoid Meltdown” is so classically Iron Chic with their signature roller-coaster cadence, insightfully poetic lyrics, gritty bass, and drums flailing. Low Culture finishes it out with a singalong track about wanting to drink beer and listen to records with a friend, rather than be alone. This is a split I can totally get behind.
–Kayla Greet (Dirt Cult, dirtcultrecords.com / Dead Broke, deadbrokerecords.com)