Body Maintenance – S/T

Body Maintenance – S/T

The debut Body Maintenance self-titled 12” EP blends the cold and stark with the melodic and anthemic in a perfect example of Australian post-punk

Melbourne-based Body Maintenance are Riley Stafford, James Kane, Zoe Mulcahy, Nick Garth and Ella Howells. And, (unsurprisingly for Melbourne) features members from other bands including The Faculty, Moth and Alien Nosejob.

It feels like post-punk is a catch-all genre for guitar bands in 2021; an easy pigeon hole for a difficult classification for bands across diverse genres, scenes and cities. But this isn’t the case with Body Maintenance, drawing influence from the bleak soundscapes of 80s Manchester and Leeds, they play ‘real’ post-punk in all its reverb-drenched anthemic glory.

But, don’t get me wrong, this is far from a revivalist record. On their self-titled 12” EP, Body Maintenance pick up where The Chameleons left off but update the sound with modern Australian flavour, so much so that you can almost hear the haunts of Johnston Street in the swirling guitars. Their debut firmly puts them along the ranks of bands such as Orion, Total Control and Low Life. It goes without saying that this record was mastered by the legendary Mikey Young.

The opening track Glass Faces is post-punk in its most driving and energetic form, the simple and single-minded melody played in unison by the guitars is powerfully effective and draws comparison to Constant Mongrel’s debut album, Living in Excellence.

Their songwriting playfully hides melodic and beautiful moments within stark sound. AFS, Transit and Pentridge are all formed around anthemic choruses underpinned by melodic keys with an effect that’s uplifting, in that melancholy Smiths-esque kind of way.

The Body Maintenance self-titled 12” EP is out now on Kane’s own label Unwound.

Melbourne, Australia / 2021 / EP / Unwound Records