Hidden Gems & Guilty Pleasures: JAAW (UK)
Photos by Steve Gullick
JAAW (Post-Industrial / Noise Rock, UK)
JAAW is a post-industrial supergroup featuring Andy Cairns (Therapy?), Jason Stoll (Mugstar, KLÄMP, Sex Swing), Wayne Adams (Death Pedals, Big Lad, Petbrick) and Adam Betts (Three Trapped Tigers, Goldie, Squarepusher). JAAW glories in big riffs and massive hooks, while also pushing the boundaries of what that even means thanks to its uncompromising strangeness.
In the back of JAAW’s minds are the 1990s: an era when the experimental heaviness of acts like Ministry and Godflesh could find surprisingly large audiences.
They also draw on the sonic ground that’s been broken since: the disorientating ferocity of Brazil’s Deafkids, the gaseous, shapeshifted vocals on Burial’s records, and the freakout-laden noise-rock of Lightning Bolt.
Far from emulating the industrial metal masters of the past, JAAW will help shake lesser rock bands out of their generic complacency. With scant regard for typical verse/chorus/verse formulas, JAAW’s song structures are closer to the nonlinear approach of body-shaking dance music.
Recorded intensely in a matter of days at Wayne’s Bear Bites Horse Studio in London, »Supercluster« is one of the most distinctive and exciting records that will be released this year, so heavy in textures that repeat listens will prove endlessly rewarding.
While recording »Supercluster« at Wayne’s Bear Bites Horse Studio and experimenting with squealing effects pedals selected from the studio’s racks, Cairns was reminded of his love for the feedback-drenched records of Helios Creed and Nuklear Blast Suntan. Having grown up listening to Therapy?, Adams loved throwing HM-2 pedals at Cairns and hearing his riffs through Entombed-style distortion. Bassist Stoll liked the idea of “Celtic Frost playing something by Neu!”
This turned into the album’s bludgeoning centre piece, »Bring Home The Motherlode, Barry«. As co-vocalists, Adams and Cairns wrote lyrics informed by the hallucinatory horror movies of Panos Cosmatos and the unforgettable set-pieces from Ari Aster’s Midsommar.
JAAW’s sounds, ideas and modes all bleed into each other. “The lyrics, too, are part of the same whole,” adds Cairns. “I feel you could drop the needle at any point on this record and you know where you are with it. To me, it’s like greyscale psychedelia. It’s just this… experience.”
The greyscale psychedelic revolution starts here. You’d be crazy not to jump in.
Debut album »Supercluster« releases May 26th, 2023 via Svart Records. Pre-save the album here and pre-order LP / CD at this location!
All music by JAAW except »Army Of Me« by Björk. Recorded and mixed by Wayne Adams at Bear Bites Horse Studio London. Mastered by James Plotkin. Album artwork by Drew Millward.
• »Rot« Single (Svart Records, 2023)
• »Total Protonic Reversal« Single (Svart Records, 2023)
• »Supercluster« (Svart Records, 2023)
Adam Betts – Drums
Andy Cairns – Vocals, Guitars
Jason Stoll – Bass
Wayne Adams – Synthesizers, Vocals
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For fans of Godflesh, Nine Inch Nails, Ministry, Filter, Cop Shoot Cop, Misery Loves Co., Head Of David, Treponem Pal, Machines Of Loving Grace
Bojan Bidovc // music enthusiast, promoter, misanthrop and sometimes a journalist as well