As you aimlessly scroll through your social media, news feeds, and dating apps, time can seem to bend, stand still, and sometimes even quantum leap. Endless people on TikTok report strange lapses in time, recount disturbing glitches in the matrix, and question the fabric of reality. Is there truth to this, or are our brains being rattled into an altered state from overstimuli?
Rotterdam five-piece new wave outfit Iguana Death Cult announces a new single and video addressing this unsettling shift in the collective consciousness, the jerky, jazzy “Sensory Overload” off their upcoming LP Echo Palace (due 5/12 via Innovative Leisure). Channeling Madness, New York No Wave, and The English Beat, this high-energy tune is manic, disjointed, and highly catchy. It perfectly captures the feeling of ADHD, leaping and jumping from rapid-fire call-and-response chants, sax solos, and a hypnotic staccato bassline to anchor the madness. The band enlisted the talents of saxophone legend Benjamin Herman to channel his inner James Chance to blow the song into blessed oblivion.
“Scrolling up and down my feed, I literally feel like I’m traveling back and forth through space and time sometimes: since down is up and up is down and reality is starting to feel like a joke – which is making me very, very anxious,” says the band. “We wrote quite the jittery tune to compliment the manic lyrics, which are more or less heavily distorted flutters of consciousness.”
The VHS style video, directed by hache.mov, brings to mind the reality breakout moments from 80s British cult hit, The Young Ones, as well as the chaos of Madness or Dexy’s Midnight Runners videos. Running through Rotterdamn in a nightmarish, scattered Hard Day’s Night montage, a thief makes off with a stolen horn – and then a plot twist happens. Rival brass band gang? A Footloose plot forbidding cornets in their town? It’s hard to tell what’s going on, but isn’t that true of any social media crisis cycle?
Iguana Death Cult, comprised of frontman Jeroen Reek, guitarist/vocalist Tobias Opschoor, bassist Justin Boer, drummer Arjen van Opstal and key player Jimmy de Kok, evolved their sound during the pandemic as coping mechanism. The band name is a partial nod to Reek’s fascination with cults in general — and the “Iguana” part is a nod to Iggy Pop, whose first band was the Iguanas. The band took their trademark melodic garage-rock style and expanded it out to make it vibier and looser, with each member contributing ideas to develop the sound palette in full. “We all get into this sort of blender and then everybody gives a little bit of a flavour to it,” says Opschoor.
Iguana Death Cult will make an appearance at this year’s SXSW (March 10 – March 19, 2023 in Austin, TX). Find more info and view the full line-up here.
Pre-save and pre-order Echo Palace here.
In late April the band will be playing the UK in London and Brighton, and returning to the Netherlands.
Mar 10Austin, TX
Apr 29London, UK
Apr 30Brighton, UK
May 06Rotterdam, Netherlands
May 26Groningen, Netherlands
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