Hiccup is many things. A seventh album with all the energy and swagger of a debut release, a guitar driven musical blast built of slabs of sound rather than the intricacies and detail which the instrument usually loves to bathe in, punk urgency soaked in fuzzy, psychedelic washes, a sucker punch and a hug, an inward looking and reflective odyssey which just happens to sound like it wants to pick a fight with the world. Juxtapositions are wonderful things when used correctly.
And it is this warped blend and belligerent non-conformity which means that this album could have been the product of the hidden underground movement of almost any musical era to date from 60’s garage rock experiments to 70’s psychedelic scenes, from post-punk explorations to the dark under belly of 90’s college rock or grunge and on into the mix and match post-genre approach of the 21st century.
If bands like Sonic Youth explored similar territory by lacing their music through with intricate but primal guitar riffs and meandering but memorable hooks, Tym Wojcik, the man behind Cup takes a simpler route, building a wall of noise which is more about a presence than necessarily a tune in the more accessible sense. So much so that his musings which in their subject matter often seen mutually exclusive to the bluntness of the music – anxiety, existence, meaning and communication – often get a bit lost in the musical maelstrom that he conjures up.
Challenging, uncompromising, brutal and direct, it is an album which isn’t about making an initial connection, it is more about increased rewards over successive plays, once you get your head around how his unique musical world works, understand its rules, self-imposed limitations and modus operandi. Once your ear is in you will find a gem of an album, a rough and unpolished gem, but a gem none the less. So go and play it, play it again, and again, once more, keep going, don’t stop, again….