Can’t Swim has undergone a shocking transformation in their most recent release “Foreign Language.” The New Jersey quintet completely dropped their whiny emo act for something much more brutal, aggressive and political. While Can’t Swim has always leaned on the heavier side of things across their emo discography, this EP is on a totally new level. Featuring big hardcore/rock names such as Drew Dijorio of Stray From The Path, and Frank Carter from Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes — “Foreign Language” is fast, punchy and unexpectedly belligerent.
The dive into the instrumental of this EP is a short one. This album is anything but complicated. There is constant bashing of drums, chugging of bass and chaos of the guitar. Giving the audience a healthy dose of breakdowns one track after the next, the aggression is non-stop. While not complicated, this album is certainly creative throughout the entire work. Using samples of sounds like the Xbox One startup and shutdown, and a power drill, Can’t Swim gives listeners 11 minutes of unique political frustration.
Track four “Power” is a perfect example of this brand new Can’t Swim. They are pissed and this track shows it. Starting off with a playful guitar melody and an odd mechanical noise, which is a power drill, “Power” explodes into pure, distilled noise. “Molotov’s and bricks and rocks/Baseball bats and Kalashnikovs/Knives and ropes and riot shields/Razor wire and mortar shells/When this is what your power brings/These are a few of my favorite things.” Lyrics from this track express frustration for the current government in the states. They believe the system promotes chaos and violence. Can’t Swim used to write about being left out in the cold but that has matured into this new left-winged punk outfit.
Vocals have taken a complete turn on this record. Chris LoPorto, the frontman of the project, dynamically changed his style. While still a bit whiny, LoPorto turns his shrieky cries into disastrous howls. This is paired with solid dirty hardcore vocals from backing vocalists Greg McDevitt and Danny Rico. These two are responsible for the heavier vocals on the EP. While LoPorto already sounds like a demon this duo sounds like the devil. Rico and McDevitt unleash gutturals and screeches that sound like the seventh layer of hell.
This vocals are showcased predominantly in track two “Filthy Rich.” This is undoubtedly the heaviest track of the bunch. “Filthy Rich” greets you with yelling of the word, “DEGENERATE!” This track clobbers the eardrums and is a non-stop beating. Using a classic chanty chorus and a proper dose of guttural vocals, this track is out of control.
New and refined Can’t Swim have unleashed an absolute beast upon the world via “Foreign Language.” This album is politically heated and screams the message of change. Messy, feral, and enraged, Can’t Swim will trample all in their way.
Recommended Track: “Filthy Rich”