Watcher (Punishment)

Crank this to 9.7 of 11 - Editors' Pick

Released: 2020

Genre: Math Rock

Sounds Like: Barkmarket, The Jesus Lizard, Henry Rollins Band

Some of our favorite albums we discover after the band has broken up. From the unrivaled one-item collaboration of Strippers In Love’s I Am What I’m Becoming to Ancient Sky’s masterful and majestic work of Mosaic we have stumbled upon another suffocated diamond in the rough.


Welcome Watcher and their overtly dark and abrasive math rock gem entitled Punishment. While indeed defunct, the band apparently never fully released the 9 song LP within Punishment. The nine tracks feature everything true math rock lovers would want, from rich baselines to thick elaborately complex percussive arrangements fed by perfectly matched guttural vocals. The Nashville Tennessee natives do a wonderful job with their change-ups and contrast. Each track blends impressively to form an album that we find addictive no matter which track you kick-off the listening venture with.While we have no clue why the band called it quits, they should know that they had the chemistry so lacking within today’s math rock scene. Punishment has grown to be a staple within our heavy rotation and while the opportunity for further visions from the band look bleak, we would love to inspire some kind of resurgence down the road. No harm in asking.

Track Listing:

1. punisher (1:19)

2. thickneckbreeder/mask (6:15)

3. few long while (2:07)

4. druthers (1:49)\

5. mirror pt. 2&3 (6:30)

6. two cups (3:41)

7. mirror pt. 1 (1:45)

8. sway (2:09)

9. thoss road (4:05)

Standout Track:

"Thickneckbreeder/mask" will pummel your eardrums. The track is frankly exhaustive taking some very wild and divergent turns. Against the grain beauty is how we like to call it. The vision to hear and produce sounds that many may not get at first listen, just shine 12 or 13 listens in.

Adult Beverage Pairing:

Bearded Iris Brewing has some wonderful IPAs in its bailiwick. Punishment goes swimmingly with their 9.8% ABV Bamboozle. A hazy orange-gold color with some feverish white head. Notes of tangerines, mango, and slightly sweet malt along with some very earthy resin.


ROTATION RECAP:

Captivation and Variety

9.7 out of 11

Vocal Prowess

9.3 out of 11

Weight of the Heavy

9.8 out of 11

Fretwork Prowess

9.4 out of 11

Bass Undercurrent

9.9 out of 11

Percussive Vision

10.2 out of 11

Originality

9.7 out of 11

Overall Album Flow

9.8 out of 11

Contrast

9.7 out of 11

Album Cover Aesthetics

8.9 out of 11

Production Value

9.4out of 11

Final Thoughts:

Punishment is an impressive one-off from the now defunct Watcher. While we have not taken a deep dive into exploring the connections of this band, we certainly will. For those that may have some degrees of separation to connect us with the band members other projects, we would love to hear from you!


Follow Watcher: Bandcamp / Facebook


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