Skip to main content

Album Reviews

Music > Album Review

- Totale Nite

The genius of Totale Night is how finely tuned and balanced these incongruent elements are, and the end result is a delight to behold.

Jun 14th 2013 | Label: Spunk/Cooperative
Merchandise is a strange proposition. Bubbling up from the Tampa punk and hardcore underground, where members moonlight in bands as disparate as Cult Ritual and Divisions, the band eschew these tropes to craft what is essentially New Wave revivalism with a liberal lashing of black abrasion driven through its core. Their debut record (Strange Songs) In The Dark was an out-of-the-blue belter back in 2010, but it was just as likely that they would revel in the darkness, never to see the light of day again.

Yet here they are with album number three, and Totale Nite is the result of focus and conviction, although invariably steeped in melancholy nihilism. No longer content to use supermarket keyboards in their recording arsenal, Merchandise have fleshed out their skewed aesthetic. Carson Cox's vocals are mordant and despairing, hovering above the swirling guitars and metallic drum machines, and on Anxiety's Door it's so reminiscent of The Smiths that it's uncomfortable. However, on Totale Nite and Who Are You, with the inclusion of saxophone and harmonica respectively, we are back into more original terrain. It resembles pop, yet masked with weird tempo changes and sudden stabs of white noise. 

Totale Nite is filled with pop euphemism, continually toying with the mainstream without any intention of embracing it. The bruised, wasted sentimentality of faux-ballad I'll Be Gone stands at odds with the title track, an infernal ten-minute behemoth that runs the gamut of garage-based acts while infused with anger and industrial blasts. Such abject juxtapositions exist deliberately, yet the genius of Totale Night is how finely tuned and balanced these incongruent elements are, and the end result is a delight to behold.


Related Articles

Album > Review

Merchandise Totale Nite Justine Keating

Merchandise Totale Nite Justine Keating

Poster IT

Connect with The Music

Subscribe to Daily Newsletter


<span>Chelsea Wilson</span><br />Toff In Town

Chelsea Wilson
Toff In Town

<span>Courtney Love</span><br />Festival Hall

Courtney Love
Festival Hall

<span>Kasabian</span><br />Eatons Hill Hotel

Eatons Hill Hotel

<span>The Stevens</span><br />The Curtin

The Stevens
The Curtin

<span>Sydney Reclink Community Cup 2014</span><br />Henson Park

Sydney Reclink Community Cup 2014
Henson Park

<span>Courtney Love</span><br />Thebarton Theatre

Courtney Love
Thebarton Theatre

<span>James Reyne</span><br />The Enmore

James Reyne
The Enmore

<span>The Aston Shuffle</span><br />Oxford Art Factory

The Aston Shuffle
Oxford Art Factory

<span>Courtney Love</span><br />Metro City

Courtney Love
Metro City

this week's magazine

Digital Version

The Music Store

Australasian Music Industry Directory
The ultimate print sourcebook for all the contacts…
Jun 18th 2014
Arts Advertising Packages
The Music Arts Packages provide promotion in The Music…
Jun 18th 2014
Indie Band Advertising Packages
The Music Indie Band Packages provide promotion in…
Jun 18th 2014
Galleon Krueger for Sale
Galleon Krueger Bass Amplifier. 1001RB As new, current…
Jul 12th 2014
Jazz guitarists wanted for weekend jams.
We are a bass and drums unit rehearsing in St Peters…
Jul 12th 2014
Premier Sydney Punk/Rock Band seeks Drummer
One of Sydneys Premier Punk Rock Bands seeks energetic…
Jun 18th 2014