Fine Motor Control – Calamity

Calamity is the new EP from Toronto’s Fine Motor Control. Not to be confused with the drum/bass “new grunge” outfit of the same name also from Toronto circa 2004-2007. This band is actually the fifth collaboration between Vello Verder and Jonathan Hawkes (Beau, Les Gars, The Outfit, The Leslie Spits) But while those bands all sat comfortably in the garage rock end of the pool, the current project – a four piece – likes to dive deep into the crushing waves of reverb and distortion associated with shoegaze.

Sounding somewhere between a moodier Stone Roses and a more aggressive version of Storm In Heaven-era Verve, tracks like Into “The Shadows” and “If You Ever See Her” marry pulsing beats with reverb-drenched vocals. Meanwhile downtempo numbers like the title track and “Halo” maximize quiet/loud dynamics to lull the listener into a sense of calm before obliterating their eardrums.

My personal favourite is the last track “Sever” which I like to classify as “hypnotic driving music”. Maybe not a great combination when actually behind the wheel, but perfect for sending the mind on a road trip into bliss.