We Do Not Belong Here – Strange to Cope in Today’s World EP

We Do Not Belong Here – Strange to Cope in Today’s World EP
Release Date: 08/09/23
Running Time: 23:03
Review by Oli Gonzalez

We Do Not Belong Here. A USA trio designed as a ‘trio to reject stylistic constraints’, they certainly achieve that goal. With a reputation for switching effortlessly between genres ranging from black and death metal, through to post rock and grunge, they have more tricks up their sleeve than a clown with a tardis! Never before could a band title be so perfect, as they simply do not belong in any one fixed genre, other than perhaps ‘alternative’. 

The opening number ‘A Chain Pulled Taut’ is a rather ominous instrumental offering. I particularly admire how all three instruments – guitar, drums and bass – frequently rotate for their turn in the spotlight, overlapping and weaving between one another on the regular. The lack of special effects is impressive too, using their instruments to their full potential. They use musical pauses and silence effectively to create that ominous feeling.

If you’re after face melting black metal intensity, look no further than ‘A Life, Explained’! Taking a thrashened-black metal approach, the opening 30 seconds consists of pure balls-to-the-wall rage! Then all of a sudden, things go all calmer loungey, and ambient. We’re introduced to the vocal talent on display in the band too, here. Both Troy and Nat ooze with human emotion, primitive and elegant, yet masterfully technical and remaining in control at all times. 

Continuing the extreme metal theme, we hear elements of grind in ‘Faith Or Fucked’. It’s clear the band are playing by their own rules and not sticking to traditional genre conventions. More power to them! This all-out intensity is still interceded with calmer ambient guitar passages, as well as more vocals dripping with primitive rage. 

‘Shame’ demonstrates yet even more genre versatility with a much slower sludgy riff laden attack. This is bound to get your head rocking! 

Many of these elements feature in the final track, the album title track ‘Strange To Cope In Today’s World’. However, I certainly wasn’t expecting what appears to be the clean acoustic passage to close the album. With the calm sung voice, it certainly gives calmer, folk-like vibes. Definitely unexpected.

Overall, this album truly is a box of tricks and will keep you guessing for the duration. You’ll be confused but intrigued. Unlike the name of the band, this album does belong here, here being in your rotation of unique bands that defy convention and push compositional boundaries. 

01. A Chain Pulled Taut
02. A Life, Explained
03. Faith Or Fucked
04. Shame
05. Strange To Cope In Today’s World


Guitars and Vocals – Troy Bennett
Bass and Vocals – Nat Heck
Drums – AJ Martinez


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