Review Summary: "Hoax" sounds very much organic and in line with a wide range of music styles that often go far beyond noise rock.
Noise rock doesn't belong to the most popular music genres in Poland. That's why, Plum's new release comes as a breath of fresh air in the Polish underground music scene. The band relies on the traditional powerhouse trio formula making use of heavily distorted guitar riffs, constantly pounding bass lines and precise drumming. While their previous three releases showed an ongoing improvement in terms of raw noise rock, “Hoax” embraces much wider spectrum of influences. Thus, it marks the breakthrough for Plum who revitalize their style in the process.
“Hoax” pulsates with energy originating from frequent walls of sound that are built upon an organic cooperation between the musicians. There's no place for improvisation though. The album's soundscape feels precisely constructed, with numerous music styles interwoven with one another. The title track perfectly showcases the eclecticism of the record. It abounds in excellent desert rock riffs which are combined with The Jesus Lizard-inspired turmoil and progressive time signature alternations. “Patch,” on the other hand, is way more direct. Introducing an obsessively heavy, yet infectious bass-generated wall of sound into the game, it's one of the most notorious highlights of the record.
Later on, Plum tend to implement more commercial alternative rock elements, which results in much mellower and dreamier compositions such as Sonic Youth-echoing “Touch” and a playful punkish ballad, “Nobody Knows.” No matter which music path they choose, every composition sounds extremely fluid and focused. There are plenty of expertly executed allusions to heavy noise rock of Unsane origin in bombastic “Retarded Queen” as well as soothing blues-inspired guitar riffing in genre-shifting instrumental “It's A Must.” What's more, the band even dares to experiment with some freaky drum'n'bass in “Thread” and at the beginning of an epic closer, “Beast.”
All in all, Hoax is a concise album filled with a wide range of influences that range from intense noise rock to psychedelic passages and catchy indie tunes. Even if almost everything on here sounds familiar, Plum have a knack for making the most of every note that is being played. That's chiefly due to their impressive musicianship and fine songwriting skills. I'm certain their next album will be even better.