October 8, 2012

ALBUM REVIEW: Dirty Hate - We Don't Mind, We Don't Care (2012)

If their debut EP We Don’t Mind, We Don’t Care was any indication, Dirty Hate could be one of the most important Filipino guitar bands that came out in recent memory. They pop and fizzle with glam-nasty guitar riffs and suffocating post-punk menace, cutting through the silence with playful anthems of brood and sex, mostly combining these two to create a mood that translates to joy and sorrow, guilt and ecstasy, and a sense of vague emotional immediacy that makes you feel bad before admitting with a laugh. Like nocturnals sneaking into the empty streets late at night, they sing about finding escapism in sexual fantasies (“The Devil Inside Me”) and making love to a stranger in some hotel room to temporarily take away the loneliness (“Deception Temptation,” “La Brea”).

Dirty Hate’s We Don’t Mind, We Don’t Care vividly captures this unflinching grimness of a woefully misunderstood man completely lost to his sexual impulse and desire, sometimes mistaking it for intimacy while also reinforcing the idea of suburban loneliness and romance through a damaged, late ‘60s garage-rock tune that has everything and nothing both at once. It’s a concept record by standards: heavy on sex and emotions, relatively short on details. But looking past the artifice, it seems like the band is savoring every part of this process with seriousness that can be interpreted as mere camp, something that’s rare in indie rock music nowadays.

The EP opens with the Joy Division-worshipping “Deception Temptation,” a song that calls for sweet surrender more than anything else. When Jon Tamayo sings “Come and love me then abuse me, I am yours,” the admiration and lust moves away from its sadomasochist nature, darting now on an emotional vacuum that feels strange and dark, even bordering to love-sick crazy territory. “La Brea” takes away the uncertainty of the first two tracks with a more sober tone, evoking memories of a one night stand that’s as sticky-sweet memorable as your first kiss. It’s a spine-chilling, psychedelic love jam with a breakneck chorus that makes moments out of a sexual encounter, stomping with the reigned-in tension that eventually bursts in some kind of a punk Sweeney Todd sing-along halfway though.

“The Devil Inside Me” and “She Fell Into Darkness” continues to plod along the similar themes with sinister sexiness, turning the sexual plea into some form of a desperate howl that gets nastier as it progresses. The album surprisingly ends with “She Is My Sin,” a bright, indie-pop tune that steers into a cocktail of summery bliss and rosy romance as if darkness never really happened all along. It’s a diversion from the grim psychedelic trappings of the first 5 tracks, sucking the air out of the everyday morning haze.

You’re not going to hear many local rock records this year that will grab you by the first hook and hold you to the very last minute. Dirty Hate’s We Don’t Mind, We Don’t Care makes quite a solid impression with its churning psyche of a man trapped in his own sexual desires, providing us an inner look at the wild, dark side of intimacy and loneliness. It’s hard to turn away from this impressive bunch of sexual noir, because at one point in our lives, we could all relate to that vulnerable man looking for a sumptuous prey to bed and love. And like him, we all guiltlessly play with every sound and riffs that we’ve found at the core of our desperation, silently wishing that everything will turn in our side. B+ 


  1. I agree. amen for reviewing this underrated EP! it's funny though that their unofficial single "One Track Mind" was not mentioned in this article. just curious. :)

  2. Thanks for the comment, Ahmad. I don't think it's necessary to review everything in the album. Having said that, I told Jon personally that I like "La Brea" and "Deception Temptation." I even suggested that if ever they'll decide to put out a video release of any of their single, I'm more inclined on supporting the two aforementioned tracks than "One Track Mind." Hehe!

  3. good point. more reviews! I'll be reading as always. :)

  4. More Power Dirty Hate!!!Looking forward for the next single guys!!!

  5. yeah! Wear it Well Manila supports Dirty Hate! One Track Mind is dope! :)



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