Our Spring magazine is finally here! Click here to view and read our new articles!

Album Review: You Won’t Get What You Want, Daughters

Eight years after the band’s final album they return with the most terrifying work of the year. Almost as long as their three previous projects combined, the relentless weight of the album piles up minute by minute to an overwhelming pressure. You Won’t Get What You Want is the spiral of psychosis, the infinite strain and final snap of madness.

This is not an album for everyone, you can’t criticise it objectively or maintain independence, You Won’t Get What You Want is a confrontation, the listener is conscripted into the movement and marched, with a tightening grip on their shoulder, down the tracks. From the opening City Song, there is a continual drone enlivened by drums methodically pummelling, the constant volume is exaggerated by the sudden silences, a heavy emptiness like the aftermath of a demolition swells into the gaps before the gigantic concatenation returns. This method of an unstoppable, unforgiving wall of content is similar in feeling and method to the relentless sentences of Hungarian novelist László Krasznahorkai, whose sentences submerge the reader and carry him in their swell. For the 48 minutes of this album we are captained by Daughters’ unwavering step, and troop toward perdition’s flames.

I let it into my home (Led a long way down)
I let it in from the cold (Led a long way down)
I let it into my head (Led a long way down)
I let it into my heart (Led a long way down)
I let it into my bed (Led a long way down)
I gave it complete control (Led a long way down)

The monotone chant of many lyrics, combining with a steadily growing vault of sound echoes like the ritual of a Black Mass. It is a creepy, pervading incantation and it gets in your bones. Narrative lyrics situate our unease in response to their abrasive hatred:

That bastard had a head like a matchstick
Face like he was sucking concrete through a straw
Some faces not even a mother can love.

There is something inevitable about the finale Guest House, the album reaches an apotheosis of anxiety and impotence. Who locked the door / Who bent the key desperately asks the protagonist insisting Let me in, screaming Let me in. This is the final desperation, the door is locked, the key is bent, a padlock on the cellar, the chimney is bricked up, there is no way back, an unnameable monster follows, but there is no escape and after the final Let me in screamed like an animal, there is only a quiet instrumental peacefully washing out the harsh tones, it’s over.