Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

Special Interest embrace pop and sparkling new purpose on Endure


Release date: 04 November 2022
Special interest endure
04 November 2022, 13:31 Written by Joe Creely

There comes a point in every punk bands lifespan where one is faced with the decision to either double down on dissonance, or polish up, start tuning your guitars and start talking about things like ‘craft’.

It’s a choice that’s been the creative death of many a promising band, and it’s a position that, after two albums of well received dance-inflected punk, Special Interest find themselves in. They choose the latter, but dodge the common pitfalls, and come up with an album of superb, abrasive dance music.

Leaning into the disco influences that were present on their debut but all but faded in the name of industrial maelstroms on their utterly feral sophomore studio album The Passion Of, the band tone down the aggression and spread themselves with a greater variety. On previous records every instrument has felt like it has been fine tuned into its most attacking form, but here it’s a far greater emotional sonic palette they draw from. Lead single “Midnight Legend” abandons their shredded guitars and struts atop bouncing piano chords. It works perfectly, a sublime, euphoric statement of intent that instantly blows the possibilities for the record right open. “Love Scene” presents the new variety of sounds better than any other, with lurching bass over a haunting wail of a synth tone, slipping together into a stuttering creeper of a tune unlike anything they’ve done before.

The real change is the influence of a pop sensibility that worms its way into almost every song. All of a sudden there’s hooks spilling out everywhere. Opener “Cherry Blue Intention” has the tumbling energy and rattling industrial hi hats that are familiar to their previous works, but it is pulled by Alli Logout’s ear-worm vocal melodies that are immediate and captivating in a way we’ve never seen from them. It means that when they do play it safer, as on the straightforwardly hurtling “Concerning Peace” there’s a new life to this energy, and there isn’t a sense of repeating their past work. That said, when this pop instinct deserts them, as on the melodically looser “Kurdish Radio” and “My Displeasure” there’s a touch of a mid-album drop in momentum.

Special Interest have managed that most difficult transition, maturing without dulling, and setting up a potentially spectacular second act for an already strong band. They’ve always been a band who put their politics at the forefront, but Endure points towards a band transcending rage, and using joy as a pathway to liberation.

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