Totally Unicorn - Dream Life

Black Vinyl LP Record + Digital Download

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Dream Life is the debut studio album by Australian metal/mathcore band Totally Unicorn, released in July 2016 via Farmer & The Owl Records.

For six years Totally Unicorn battled illness, loss, break-ups and dodgy distributors to produce their first full-length. It’s a good thing they persevered because Dream Life is one of the best underground Aussie debuts in recent memory. Taking the late-Nineties Dillinger Escape Plan template and injecting it with booze and bong water, this is mongrel mathcore with a distinctly Australian flavour. Hardcore, punk, doom, acoustic, stop-on-a-dime tech, and even black metal synths and screeches get a run. Despite the silly name, oddball artwork, nudity and pisstake wine reviews, this is deadly serious, world-class music.

Given the quintet’s established relationship of shirt-removing, chaotic live performances, the album naturally steers towards a certain side - turbo metal thrashing with only momentary pauses for despairing doom collapses.

Yet, beyond the immediately dramatic, dire consequences displayed on Dream Life, there are more than a few diversions towards surprise sides of their sound. There’s a clattering acoustic break on “You Smell Like A Trophy”, which leads spectacularly into the band’s stadium rock, firework-shooting moment, destroying the song’s initial tense fragility. Elsewhere, slithers of personal reflection sneak between the more aggressive chest-thumps, as on frantic album intro “Old, Cute And Purified”, where Gardener’s signature strained, anxiety-provoking vocals are split open by succinct, plainspoken one-liners (“it’s not the best, it’s not the worst”).

At the other end of the spectrum, there’s almost-ballad “Part Time Model”, led by a vocal contribution from Robert Smith of California’s Heavy Heavy Low Low. A gloomy, heavy-plodding crumble that bizarrely wouldn’t sound much out of place in the reflective, post-apocalyptic world of Melbourne band Devastations. Not the album’s solitary guest either, with High Tension’s Karina Utomo, the album’s producer, Tim Carr, and even former member Tim McMahon also contributing, showcasing the band’s willingness to destroy the often-restraining mould of hardcore rock and helping create an eclectically adventurous album.

Totally Unicorn’s debut feels like being kicked repeatedly and sporadically in the ears by an angry horse type creature, but then it crouches down, apologises, stands up and just starts pummelling you again. Dream Life doesn’t give a fuck, as long as you’re moshing, naked and drunk, you’ll feel the same way, which is a given when this album is playing.

Check out the tracks: “Customer Service Station”; “Space Congratulations!” and “April 29 Brothers”. 

This LP is pressed in Australia on black vinyl with a digital download code.

  • Drew Gardner                — Vocals
  • Aaron Streatfeild            — Guitar
  • Kerim Erkin                    — Guitar
  • Lee Nielson                   — Bass
  • Michael Bennett             — Drums

(0080687459803)

Tracklisting:

 

 

Title

Time

A1

Old, Cute & Putrified

3:01

A2

Welcome To Slugtown

2:17

A3

April 29 Brothers

2:07

A4

Glow Of The Wine Teeth

1:30

A5

You Smell Like A Trophy

3:14

B1

Customer Service Station

2:02

B2

Borrow

2:30

B3

Part Time Model

2:59

B4

Space Congratulations!

2:22

B5

Convict Brick

1:02

B6

Dream Life

3:06

SKU 0080687459803
Record Label Farmer & The Owl
Label / Model # Inertia
Catalogue Number FATO004
Country AU - Australia
Release Date (Year) 15 September 2016
Original Release Date (Year) 29 July 2016
Barcode # 0080687459803
Shipping Weight 0.2350kg
Shipping Width 0.005m
Shipping Height 0.314m
Shipping Length 0.314m
Shipping Cubic 0.000493000m3
Type New
Format Limited Edition LP Record, Black Vinyl, Digital Download Code
Vinyl Colour Black
Genre Rock
Genre Hard Rock
Genre Hardcore
Format VINYL LP

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