Screaming Toenail – I.O.U / Sever (Hell Hath No Fury)

Screaming Toenail – I.O.U / Sever (Hell Hath No Fury)

Coming ahead of their debut album anti-colonial punks Screaming Toenail release singles I.O.U and Sever on Bandcamp. 

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Screaming ToenailArtist: Screaming Toenail
Track: I.O.U / Sever
Label: Hell Hath No Fury
Released: 3 July 2020
Find it: Bandcamp

The first tracks to be released since a 4-track demo in 2017 Screaming Toenail has returned with the visceral duo of singles I.O.U and Sever.

Kicking in with a ’00s indie-style interplay of guitars, I.O.U bounces along not with fun, but with the so-done-with-this-fire-in-veins of modern life. ‘Do the task / wear the mask’ climbs to a chorus and then falls away to a call and response of ‘nothing’. Nothing.

And that is at the heart of this song: being reduced to nothing by society, having nothing left to give, what you’re gifted, what you owe. It’s from this despondent underpinning which the vitality springs forth. It is the current running beneath the surface, only when you’re carried away by it do you realise this punk is more subtle but as necessary as it’s in-your-face aggressive counterpart.

The second track – Sever – continues this blend of indie and punk, with focus on the vocals for the attention grab. Sparse bass providing a backdrop to solemn hymnal introduces the track. It kicks in, the mix keeping the sound lo-fi while the rhythm picks up. Chiming through the middle eight it’s all clicking sticks and snarls when it returns, before threatening spin outs. It’s a brief return to the echoing hymnal as the track ends. The whole song feels wound tight with musically and thematically.

Speaking to Get In Her Ears the band said, “‘Sever’ is written in response to the never ending saga of getting your hair cut as a gender non conforming person. Or is it our response to the displacement so many of us feel as black and brown people in the diasora? Or maybe building queer community and resisting shame…”

Screaming Toenail is set to release a debut album, Growth, through Hell Hath No Fury on 28 July 2020. Check Bandcamp for availability.

Find Screaming Toenail: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Bandcamp

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Sarah Lay

Sarah Lay is editor of Popoptica.
A long-standing music journalist she's also co-founder of independent record label Reckless Yes, an author of novels, and when not messing around with words and music, a digital strategist.
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