Release Date: March 10th, 2017
Label: Deranged Records
On Meet You, Century Palm explore themes like alienation, isolation, anxiety, and ultimately take a deep dive into what dark, brooding stuff goes on in our minds. It’s an album that’s kind of like a soundtrack to the foreboding, communicated through the lyrics, as well as through the somewhat dour yet propulsive mix of post-punk and new wave. The tension between the dense – and more intense – parts of the record (the clamouring “Sick of It”, for example) and the comparatively less chaotic moments (like on “Walk Forever Blind”) works really well in subtly illustrating what struggling with fitting into a place, a city, or generally just finding your way can feel like.
There’s a lot to appreciate on Meet You – if you’re a fan of New Order, you’ll probably really appreciate Penny Clark’s synth work on the record. In particular, “Then You’re Gone” has a catchy synth line anchoring it. The song toes that line between kind of dour/sad, and being able to dance along to it. The strongest song on the record, in my opinion, is “Sick Of It”, with its horn section, churning rhythm, and almost spoken-word vocal delivery. The song is a loud, aggressive mix of sound, and it spends the entire 4 minute and 13 seconds threatening to spill over into chaos. The song is catharsis at its finest. Another key standout is the lead single, “King of John Street”, which examines the feeling of being anonymous in a big city – something particularly relatable to Toronto.
On Meet You, Century Palm lend credence to my personal belief that sad records can be the most fun records, so if you’re a fan of new wave-infused post-punk, this is the record for you.