In 1921, HG Wells observed that “human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe”. In 2021, Birmingham-based noise-rock artist Fauxchisels brought forth their artfully caustic album, Education or Catastrophe, demonstrating that little has changed in the presiding century aside from the widening of inequity.
Education or Catastrophe kicks off with the Fugazi-Esque fervent single, Get Over Yrself, before the despondent Northern roots start to really pull through in Badges and Ideals instrumentally and lyrically through lines such as “You bring the Daily Mail, I’ll bring the matches”; proving that Fauxchisels are just as adept at witty protestive soundbites as any of the contemporary punk-chart toppers.
Track five, Family Friendly, is a meditatively harrowing single that will feel familiar to any fans of Arab Strap as the imploring sermonic vocals act as a candid invitation into the dourness of the thankless domesticity we’ve all wrestled with during lockown.
Constant Ghost is one of those engorging aural oddities that reels you in hook, bassline and sinker, the tumultuous chaos of the breakdowns against the steady canter of the poetic lyrics is art-punk at its finest.
The album is far cheaper and probably far more effective in giving you a cathartic outlet for your rage than therapy. Fauxchisels went above the usual austere indignance in the 12-track release that never gives you the chance to feel comfortable or complacent with the versatility in styling, emotion and volatility.
Review by Amelia Vandergast