TDK – Неместа

TDK return with their third album Неместа, which contains some of the harshest and most experimental music that the Bulgarian band has ever written.

tdk-nonplaces

Artist: TDK

Title: Неместа

Release: CD / Digital

Year: 2023

Label: Self-Released 

TDK (ТДК) is hailing from Plovdiv, Bulgaria. Last year the band celebrated their 10th anniversary just a few months after they traveled to Vancouver, Canada to track their third album (and second with producer Jesse Gander, known for his work for Brutus and Japandroids among others). I delve into Неместа, which translates to ‘Non-Places’ in English, while on a huge Naked City binge so when album opener “15” straight-up launches at me with the screeching saxophone of guest musician Chris Kelly I know I’m on the right place.

TDK waste no time and indulge in high-octane noise-rock outbursts garnered with anxious spoken word that climaxes into maniacal screaming.

Внезапен мрак

И надигат се викове колко…

Неместа contains the most chaotic and untamed pieces of music TDK has ever recorded. Yes, you can trace some bits and pieces hinting at previous records, mostly coming down to rhythmic approaches and structures but the overall vibe is something of its own. All six tracks flow into each other and grow into one miasmatic noise-drenched rock’n’roll soundscape nuanced with various samples, noises, screams, and even accordion lines, courtesy of Alexei Kalinin, another guest musician.

The core of this record is the trinity of tracks “Фиаско”, “Автомонтьора” and “Иване”. Those are lined up one after the other and are here to chew and spit you on the floor senseless. I’m glad to hear Vasil Brakalov’s juicy doom-inspired riffs working so tightly with Jay Dishliev’s anxious and psychedelic (see, I didn’t say hippie) approach to the guitar. Listening to those two feels closer to solving a puzzle with all of the anxiety and satisfaction that comes from successfully making your way through the music.

While it’s definitely easier to see what’s going around the guitars, the schizoid singing, and the band’s typically heavy-weight lyrics, tracks like “Казваха”, “текстачетоха” or the second half of “Фиаско” showcase how rhythm-driven TDK’s music actually is, for which one should thank drummer Zdravko Dochev and bass player Rosen Petrov.

Аз знам, че всеки мой ден е последен

For almost 11 years of existence, TDK has gone through multiple line-ups, with only singer and writer Nikola Nikolov holding it together, not without the help of TDK’s sixth shadowy member Tony Schnitter though. This record, however, has the potential to truly solidify the current lineup because while the music is going places where TDK has never been before it all sounds natural and lived through. Producer Jesse Gander managed not only to glue all this intuitive musical chaos together but gave it color and taste not comparable to anything TDK has done before.

Неместа is a narrative-intense record, it’s not filled to its top with catchy choruses or hooks you can hum while cooking at home. Instead, it’s meant to fully possess you. I promise, there are parts of this multi-layered story that you’d like to relive again and again. For me, the album is meant to be experienced in solitude and yet listening to it as loud as possible will surely add another layer of madness to the whole. I guess we’ll find out on April 27 at NDK, Sofia.

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