Gnarwhal Share “Light-Up City” via NPR Music Crucial out May 12th on Exploding In Sound Records

April 30, 2017

Reese Faw

Gnarwhal Share “Light-Up City” via NPR Music

Crucial out May 12th on Exploding In Sound Records

On Tour Now with Pile

Gnarwhal are sharing their new single “Light-Up City” today on NPR Music, a song that captures the band at their most expansive, capturing their dynamic shifts and hard rhythmic fury with a greater attention to post-hardcore and atmosphere. The song comes from the duo’s upcoming record, Crucial, due out May 12th via Exploding In Sound Records. NPR called it “a raw and switchback-crazy seven minutes of chaotic math-rock. Drive Like Jehu’s most emotionally wrought moments come to mind, but stripped down to the bare essentials.”

The duo of Chappy Hull (vocals/guitar) and Tyler Coburn (drums) recorded the album at Weenie Hut Jr. in Nashville, TN with Seth Engel (Options, Nnamdi Ogbonnaya, Great Deceivers) and mastered by Michael J. Thomas (Grass Is Green, Empress Of). The album finds Gnarwhal digging into their complex math rock roots while embracing more straight forward post-punk, an album that pulls as much influence from bands like Hella and Lightning Bolt as it does Drive Like Jehu and Shellac. It’s a wild ride from two of the DIY scene’s most impeccable musicians. The band are out in support of the record on a full US tour together with Pile (complete dates below).

05/02 – Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
05/03 – Seattle, WA @ The Black Lodge
05/05 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Loading Dock
05/06 – Denver, CO @ Lost Lake Lounge
05/07 – Omaha, NE @ River City Star
05/09 – Minneapolis, MN @ 7th St. Entry
05/10 – Milwaukee, WI @ Cactus Club
05/11 – Chicago, IL @ Subterranean
05/12 – Detroit, MI @ Marble Bar
05/13 – Lakewood, OH @ Mahall’s
05/14 – Rochester, NY @ Bug Jar
05/15 – Cambridge, MA @ Charlie’s Kitchen w/ Kal Marks, Birthing Hips & Big Mess *
05/16 – Brooklyn, NY @ The Glove w/ GRID & Maneka ** no Pile

May 12, 2017
Exploding In Sound Records

1. Marathon Ripper
2. The Smell of the Bag
3. Lazy River
4. Being Kidding
5. Cool River
6. Let Going
7. My Crucial
8. Light-Up City
9. Your Crucial
10. Driveway
11. Part Two: Binary Cottage
12. Crucial

“The track sees Hull shoot off so many different riffs its hard to keep track of them, but it’s Coburn’s ability to make them all feel as one that keeps “Marathon Ripper” from ever feeling disjointed. It’s math-rock, but there are gnarled pop hooks sprinkled in, and stop-on-a-dime shifts” – AV Club

“It’s an album as terrorizing as it is technical: a maelstrom of post-hardcore, noise and scuzz-metal that recalls a filthier Hella, or maybe a brainer METZ. Their new single is called “Being Kidding,” but the track’s no joke; though it may resemble all-out punk pummeling, the song’s underbelly points to a sinister, well-executed master plan.” – Clrvynt


Gnarwhal are getting ready to release their sophomore album Crucial on May 12th, an expansive record that balances the band’s primal carnage with a stronger melodic focus than ever before. Furiously blending the technicality of progressive rock with noise, post-hardcore, and an undeniable math punk brilliance that simultaneously explodes in every direction, Crucial sets a new tone for the duo’s experimental sound. Gnarwhal occupy a unique sonic space of warped punk, operating somewhere between the ballistic force and twisted scuzz of Lightning Bolt and Hella while drawing from influences that include Shellac, Drive Like Jehu, Unwound, and Rage Against The Machine. Crucial is punk for the forward thinking audience, an avalanche of brutal pop songs buried under the rubble.

Gnarwhal are a two piece math punk band from Nashville, TN that have been making noise throughout the country since forming in 2009. Originally a quartet, the band self released their full length debut “Duane” back in 2011. Shortly after, Gnarwhal shed a few members, slimming down to the duo of Chappy Hull (guitars/vocals) and Tyler Coburn (drums), widely considered to be one of the underground’s tightest two-pieces. After a series of split singles on Infinity Cat and Community Records, Gnarwhal released their sophomore album Shinerboy in the summer of 2015 via Flannel Gurl/Exploding In Sound Records.

The band have spent a great deal of time on the road, zigzagging throughout the entire country’s basement and DIY scenes, dropping the jaws of all those who witness the intensity of their lives shows. Hull and Coburn (who splits his time between Gnarwhal and crushing metal masterminds Yautja) have earned a reputation for their unpredictable complexity, building on constantly shifting rhythms and freaked out structures, creating their own unique experimental punk from another planet.

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