You Must Whip this (n)"Ice" New Single From Whippets

Whether you realize it or not, we’re currently deep in the shoegaze era of, well, everything.

a month ago

Whether you realize it or not, we’re currently deep in the shoegaze era of, well, everything. I can’t pinpoint exactly where this surge began (was it the return of My Bloody Valentine in 2013? Nothing’s modern classic Guilty of Everything? Something else altogether?), but by any measure, the -gaze tag has now seeped its way into everything extreme, from black and death metal to doom to post-rock and even hardcore. Maybe I’m full of shit and it was here all along, but it seems like it’s pretty much inescapable at this point.

Now, despite the swelling ‘gaze-ification of every genre, what Whippets offer treads outside the waters of anything I’ve come across as of late, which is why I’m especially psyched out of my mind on bringing you the debut of their new single, “Ice,” from their debut self-titled LP, out May 24 on No Coast Records. Smash dat play button and let’s get into it.

There’s something ever-captivating about a psyche-out cold opener like this. Just when you think you’ll be truckin’ along with this rusty razor blade guitar riff, the rhythm section pops in to throw a curveball to get this song onto its proper grungy footing. It’s a hint to the finesse and nuance of their songwriting, which elevate this track beyond spartan garage rock into an almost surfy kind of post-punk loaded with emphatic crashes, hooks, and tasteful-yet-rippin’ leads to send it all home.

Guitarist/vocalist Bobby Hussy’s delivery is as distinctive as they come, coercing ears to the lyrical barbs and indelible melodies, but what seems to make this track utterly chuggable is the keen songsmanship. There’s a real ebb and flow to this track that belies its initial simplicity, where Whippets play with dynamics on every front: sometimes subtly quiet then suddenly melting down amps, playing it straight then tossing in the occasional gnarly little ear-turner in there, or leaning into the abrasive and later rounding things out with tuneful, anthemic leads before an all-too-sudden abrupt close. All this is just a long way of saying it’s worthy of the repeat button.


Anyone into Midwest punk might be picking up on some familiar threads here, and you’re probably right in connecting some dots. This power trio is Wisconsin punk through and through, featuring Bobby Hussy (The Hussy, Wristwatch, TIT), bassist Tyler Spatz (Poney, Wristwatch, This Is the Last Time) and drummer Hart Miller (Tenement, Wartorn). Though this single leans in a decidedly more grungy and post-punk flavor, elsewhere they lock in on jarring noise rock, speed punk, slacker rock, sludge, and so much else with more than a touch of the -gaze. I’ve had the privilege of hearing the record in full, and I say with stupid-dummy confidence that anyone with an interest in angsty post-punk — there are some serious fucking burners on here — will be making room for this on their year-end lists. Do yourself a favor and check it out as it drops on May 24, it’s fucking phenomenal. Preorder it here and grab the wax while you still can.

Single art for "Ice" by Robbie Smith

* Bonus trivia for you Heavy Heavy Low Low (who are currently working on some new material) fans, the album cover and single art (pictured above) were created by vocalist Robbie Smith. How ‘bout that now?

Jordan Jerabek

Published a month ago