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Live Review: Grasps creates dark & noisy electronica on double single 'Eyes Shut / Barbed Wire Heart'

10 March 2019 | 9:03 pm | Max Lewis

Sydney producer Grasps is back with a one-two punch of dark and distorted club music with the double single 'Eyes Shut / Barbed Wire Heart'.

There's something appealing about noise - not the construction next door that wakes me up at 7 am every day, but in the organic craziness of stuff like feedback loops and clipping audio. Combine that with some underground club beats and a hearty dose of industrial music, and you've got a recipe for something cool as hell. That's what I'd call the latest two-track release by Sydney producer GRASPS anyhow.

A producer, DJ and also co-founder of the local Eternal label, Grasps crafts what he calls "deconstructed club music." Unlike deconstructed coffee, however, what Grasps does is send club music to hell and then bring it back for us to listen to: it's aggressive like a punch in the face when it needs to be, and oozing dark and foreboding atmosphere everywhere else. Having worked with other Sydney underground gurus like PTWIGGS and Marcus WhaleGrasps is one of the many underdogs proving that Sydney's experimental scene is going better than ever, if you know where to look.

'Eyes Shut' kicks things off with a siren-like wail leading to a dark, industrial melody and percussion pulsing with energy. Combine that with a myriad of warped samples and you've got a club track that sounds like a losing battle between man and machine. With a bit-crushed synth melody making way for pounding distorted kicks and a soundscape of industrial samples, 'Barbed Wire Heart' feels lighter but still carries the same crunchy energy of 'Eyes Shut'. There's more melodic moments on display but they're still distorted to hell, exuding a kind of harsh beauty that really brings it out of its shell.

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'Eyes Shut' and 'Barbed Wire Heart' is another humdinger from an artist that's constantly pushing the envelope. If you like your club music with a bit of bite and darkness to it, look no further than Grasps.

Photo via FACEBOOK

Words by MAX LEWIS