St. John’s has long had a grimy underbelly if you know where to look. Tucked away into dark corners and twilight dives, there’s just as much to lament as there is to revere. Usually ostracized in favour of family friendly fare, enigmatic black sheep have long held their own place. Derm’s been one for years. Have you heard of him? No? Well it’s about fucking time you did.
He’s basically the bastard love child of Iggy Pop and Ian Curtis, conceived while Henry Rollins and Glenn Danzig watched, entwined in leather, from the corner. Intensity is a divine calling; there’s unadulterated charisma drawing his voice in, no matter what the band is doing. And what a mighty band he has! (Jud Haynes, Krista Power, Christian Gagnon, and Harry Parsons are the band on this album).
The witches and wizards somehow concoct a deadly potion that’s sharp and heavy, but lofty and dastardly psychedelic. There’s strength in that backbone, one that needs to keep straight to handle the meandering Derm will throw it through.
The album’s a marathon, with only a bottle full of whiskey to keep those lips wet. Licks of old school hardcore are greeted with smacks of more modern noise rock, but it’s never in jest. It’s authentic. It never slows down too much, rarely catches its breath. There’s no patience for filler; everything useless has been boiled away, leaving a distilled and pure product.
Incredible harnesses what most people find terrible about music and turns it into something that they’ll hate. Call it a gift. If you grew up in a sweat-soaked moshpit like any good God-fearing teenager you’ll be shoved right back into it. Airy and sinister, grim and loose, it entrances you back into chaos. It’s that darling gal who pecks your cheek all night and drink doubles on your dime. It’s that fuckboy who calls you in the middle of the night. Dastardly cunning, it’s got animalistic yearnings that you’ll give into and wonder why.
The answer’s obvious: Incredible’s raucous and real. That’s a formula for a great time. Visceral and instinctual habits should never be left to run rampant, but under the right circumstances it’s a lot of fun to let them out to play. Sometimes those rough types have a lot of charm. Sometimes those charmers like it rough. There’s no regrets. Incredible is a grandiose (and I’d say purposely tongue in cheek) title for something so perfectly primitive.