How many bands have tried to sound like Joy Division? And how many have actually succeeded? This is the kind of thing I think about when I hear a song like “Bubble Of Me,” the opening track from the Chicago dark-punk trio Primitive Teeth’s forthcoming EP. I don’t think Primitive Teeth are trying to sound like Joy Division. They don’t really sound like Joy Division. And yet “Bubble Of Me” has some of the spare, urgent sense of propulsion that so many Joy Division imitators over the years just haven’t figured out.
Primitive Teeth are a relatively new band; they only just released their debut EP last year. (That EP, like the one that’s coming out next month, is self-titled. Maybe Primitive Teeth are only releasing self-titled EPs, and we’re going to have to just call them numbers like this was Zeppelin.) The members of the band have been working on Chicago’s DIY scene for many years, playing in bands like Daylight Robbery and Violent End. In Primitive Teeth, they’re making stark, theatrical, gothed-out punk rock, and they are kicking a whole lot of ass.
“Bubble Of Me” has an absolutely mean bassline, a confidently wailed vocal from leader Christine Wolf, and some intense lyrics about the transactional nature of human relationships. I really, really like it. Listen to it below.
The second self-titled Primitive Teeth EP is out 3/20 on Dirt Cult Records.