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Reviewed by Jean Bell

P.H.F.: 9mm

Reviewed by Jean Bell

P.H.F.: 9mm

The beauty of this Auckland garage pop outfit has always been in their palatably abrasive sound. Their back catalogue includes ‘Grind State’, a refreshing slap to the face of grunge-pop rock. Next was ‘Soft’, aptly named with its smooth and dreamy synths. ‘9MM’ stays true to P.H.F.’s signature lo-fi sound with distorted vocals riding a wave of garage rock guitar instrumentation and energetic drumming. Drummer Reuben Winter produced the album and is also known for his work as Totems. Joe Locke’s fuzzy vocals act as an instrument at times, distorted like a satellite signal bent by time and space. Fresh Gallon boasts metallic guitar (Sam Wieck) over neatly processed drums and Nigel Wright’s bouncy funk bass, a sonic re-imagination of surf rock. The calmly ominous guitar melody of Queen closely follows. Ripe with guest appearances, ‘9mm’ features Clairo, Sachi, Daniel Smith and Arthur Shea. The range of sound ensures the album remains fresh throughout, save for Hella verging on being a little repetitive. Santa Maria offers an eerie moment of whispered narrative before diving back into the vigour of Girls. ‘9MM’ sits very pretty in the band’s collection of work, this talented group have carved out a unique sound and continue to own it.