Taiwan Housing Project I Sub-Language Trustees LP
Taiwan Housing Project
Sub Language Trustees
Fiercely independent and furiously articulate, Taiwan Housing Project is the kind of band they don’t make anymore. Whether sweating it out in a dark basement with tomorrow’s noise-rock elite or tearing up the stage opening for yesterday’s no wave heroes, Taiwan Housing Project exude confidence, purpose and poise. But the dominant theme for THP is fire -- the kind that burns deep in the gut; the kind that burns the dead growth gone; the kind that sparks violent and necessary change. Singer/ guitarist Kilynn Lunsford is the kind of hellraiser that your momma warned you about. Leading her band into the fray, Lunsford wields her voice like a dagger and her guitar like a broadsword. Her trusty lieutenant is guitarist Mark Feehan, who once drew serious blood in ‘90s attack unit Harry Pussy. Feehan coaxes sounds from his guitar that veer from eerie vines of feedback to gutbucket wah-wah stomp, perfectly complimenting the rhythm section’s slam and throb. Live, the four members of Taiwan Housing Project engage in a ritualistic frenzy that borders on the hypnotic.
For Sub-Language Trustees, their follow up to 2017’s critically- acclaimed debut Veblen Death Mask, Taiwan Housing Project has partnered with NYC’s Ever/Never Records. Sub-Language Trustees is a striking addition to Ever/Never’s deep and diverse catalog.
The album opens with a jolt in the form of the punishing, sax- streaked “Charitable Fiend.” Stage set, the band launches into “Vessel Creep,” a pulse-quickening journey into a heart of darkness that only Lunsford can fully comprehend. “Buy Buy Buy” opens with children screaming and laughing, which adds a little levity to its vicious takedown of capitalism and the commodification of sex and romance. Here is Taiwan Housing Project at their most inviting and their most pugilistic -- the paradox is the point. Seduction and desire turns on itself. The American Dream speeds away in a gas-guzzling SUV and you’re left holding the roses, inhaling dust and fumes like it’s your birthright. The mesmerizing “Downy Hump” can only be described as a refreshing trip to the swamp, while “In A Cartoon I Can Sing” and “Toxic Garbage People” are heat-seeking missiles designed to kill (your sense of equilibrium). On Sub-Language Trustees, Taiwan Housing Project is channeling the discontent of the monoculture into brutal and mysterious songs not unlike Sonic Youth circa Bad Moon Rising. This is powerful music fueled by rage and ecstasy and it functions like a torch for these dark times.