Gulch & Sunami’s New Split 7″ Is Insane
Right now, Gulch and Sunami are two of the most talked-about bands in hardcore. Both bands come from San Jose, both of them have serious mystique working for them, and both of them are right at the forefront of a resurgent Bay Area scene. The two bands share members, though they kept up a jokey social-media narrative that they were beefing with each other for a while. If you watch live-show videos of either band, you were see some tremendous acts of ignorance. (Sunami have only ever played one show, but the video evidence of it is already legendary.) Suffice to say: The fact that Gulch and Sunami have just come together for a split 7″ is a big deal, at least in this little world.
Yesterday, hours before its release, the two bands announced the impending split. It’s got two new songs apiece from both bands: “Step Up” and “Die Slow” from Sunami, “Bolt Swallower” and “Accelerator” from Gulch. The two bands really show out on those songs. The bands sound nothing like each other. Gulch’s style is a freaked-out, violent, metallic anxiety attack, while Sunami go for sheer hammerhead malfeasance and do it better than just about anyone else these days. Somehow, though, they go together perfectly.
Gulch, in particular, do ridiculous work here. Impenetrable Cerebral Fortress, the band’s 2020 full-length debut, was my favorite hardcore album of last year, and the ambitious four-minute rage-out “Blot Swallower” is about as good as anything on that album. Sunami, meanwhile, released their debut EP last year, and they’ve got a full-length coming later this year. Their two songs are the knucklehead mosh music that the world wants from them. Listen to the whole split below.