Dumb's postpunk is as intelligent as it gets

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      Seeing Green (Mint)

      With all the examples of poor musicianship on offer in the iTunes store, it’s easy to write off semi-experimental, abrasive postpunk as brainless. Despite its tongue-in-cheek band name, though, local group Dumb proves the genre is anything but.

      Over the past two years, the four-piece has released a trilogy of albums, each high-energy and aggressive, yet incorporating musical twists that add an inventive flair to the records—an extra beat here, or an unexpected chord there. Its latest release, the 14-track Seeing Green, develops those ideas further.

      Standout track “Hard Sea”, for instance, takes a note out of Devo’s book with its thumping rhythm, but adds coarse, atonal guitar solos that culminate in a clean, palm-muted coda. “Artfact”, too, sounds like the angry younger brother of Talking Heads-era David Byrne in his first Spanish language class, while the major to minor shifts of “Warming Up” are impossible to anticipate.

      As a result, Seeing Green is postpunk at its most interesting—never predictable, and always on the cusp of spiralling out of control.

      Follow Kate Wilson on Twitter @KateWilsonSays