I’m consistently shocked at how many unknown bands I’ve come across with heaps and heaps of talent to display. Properties of Nature is no different. This funky post-hardcore band has a familiar sound, but a distinct identity in their execution. At long last, their debut album, Wolves in Business Suits, will be let loose into the world this Thursday, but here’s a preview:
“Pirates Don’t Say “Yarr!” Anymore” makes it obvious from the start that Properties of Nature isn’t your everyday band. The smooth time-signature transition, the layering of guitar riffs at all times, and strange song structure creates an unpredictable listen for first-timers. I counted and there’s six completely-different sounding sections to this opening track.
We had the pleasure of debuting the second song off Wolves in Business Clothes, “L.S.F.H.Q.P.” back in May. This piece features Dwellings vocalist Isaac Wilson, who’s making his way into our articles quite often with his features/impressive voice. While his feature is fantastic, it doesn’t steal the spotlight from Properties of Nature, whose striking riffs and curveball structure continues to help the band stand out.
“Sorry Excuse” was Properties of Nature’s first song way back in 2018, but is still a great jam in 2020. The lyrical content is over-the-top, as it details a relationship gone wrong: “I never said I didn’t have a problem, I only said I had my faults. I sure as f*** don’t need you to solve them” caps off the mental frustration of the singer.
“Sarcoma” is a brief, beautiful piece that sees the delicate side of the band. Its outro is the icing on the cake, a natural progression into the next standout piece, “One Nightstand.” A whopping seven minutes in length, it’s a test of the band’s range that they pass with flying colors. I’ve reviewed long songs before, and some have long, trite bridges, but this is an example of a musical journey that never hits the brakes. Thanks to the inspired production, the band’s ability to flip the switch of heavy/soft in a heartbeat, and ample talent in each moving part, “One Nightstand” is a song for the Swancore ages.
Nearing the end, we hit “Giraffulo,” which still maintains the fascinating springy guitars, catchy choruses, and irregular snare hits that Properties of Nature is so adept with. Last but not least is the single “You Didn’t Start a Fire in My Heart, You Started It in My House!” which sounds just as obtuse as it’s titled. Key changes-a-plenty, groovy, and just as strange as the rest, it caps off Wolves in Business Suits excellently.
Properties of Nature is bewilderingly incredible. Each of their songs exude a high level of quality, polish, and thought, and it’s clear that these songs weren’t written overnight. It’s essential post-hardcore listening, and another to add to the list of amazing little-known Swancore in 2020 with Galleons and Pulses. not far behind.
A press copy of Wolves in Business Suits was provided courtesy of Simpl. ahead of release.