Last October, whilst I was stuck in hospital recovering from an operation to mend my broken hip (long story), a track by the Chicago post-punk outfit Stuck dropped into my inbox.  Entitled “Do Not Reply,” the nervy, tempo-shifting, and immensely fun single has gradually become one of my most-played songs over these seven months.  In fact, it might slap even harder now than it did on first listen; that chorus hook is infectious.  So, yeah, you can say that I’m down to hear more from what went down in those recording sessions.  Next month, I’m going to have a full album of songs from them.

Entitled Freak Frequency, the band’s sophomore full-length was originally announced in March with opener “The Punisher.”  Much like “Reply,” it’s got tight guitar interplay, desperate vocal yelps trashing on QAnon types, and a hook that drills right down into the brain refusing to let up.  It also, to my eternal pleasure, has saxophone squalls all over it from Sarah Clausen.

Today, Stuck’s album goes three-for-three in singles with the frantic “Time Out.”  Especially in the looping triplets of the chorus, I’m reminded a bit of classic Parquet Courts rockers; that combination of rickety tightness, goofy fun, and incisive lyrical commentary.  This time, vocalist Greg Obis is zeroing in on social media compulsion and the industry’s exploitation of our basest negative desires for their profit.  “Sell the pain! Make it hurt! High engagement! Low returns!”

There’s also a enjoyably silly video by Jess Bass & Seamus Carey you can watch below.

Freak Frequency releases on 26th May via Born Yesterday Records.  Get excited.  I know I am.

Words: Callie Petch