Published Oct 26, 2016Now on their third LP, Athens, Georgia's Muuy Biien have developed into a cohesive band. The project, initially an outlet for singer Joshua Evans' moody ambient creations, has expanded into a fierce five-piece that has helped push Muuy Biien's sound further into explorations of hardcore, post-punk and deathrock.
Age of Uncertainty moves in a particular sonic direction, sounding more like it was written as one rather than an assortment of ideas. Muuy Biien wallow in a murky psych punk sound reminiscent of the Birthday Party or the Fall at their most accessible: bass is mixed up front, stumbling along off-balance with an intoxicated, fuzzy tone; pianos provide melodic accents for twangy guitar arpeggios and squeals of saxophone.
Though Evans does more actual singing than usual here, his vocals still prove versatile. On "Sike Song," his nasal snarl rides over the distorted bass like Iggy on a Stooges track. Tracks like "In the Pits" and "Mara" find him adopting a garage rock swagger that evokes Ty Segall, and he mumbles his way through "Bitter Blessings" and "Another Chore."
The band seem to have detached from the violent exuberance of their earlier records, suggesting a more lethargic and sarcastic brand of misanthropy, and while this sense of weariness can carry over into the music at times, more often than not it's flipped into a woozy, enveloping atmosphere that frames some of the band's most accomplished songwriting to date. (Autumn Tone)