Home Read Albums Of The Week: Other Half | Other Half’s Dark Ageism

Albums Of The Week: Other Half | Other Half’s Dark Ageism

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “It has been said many times and in many ways that what the world needs now is another rock ’n’ roll band. This could well be the one of which the pundits spoke, Other Half, still having a laugh, 2024.

Welcome to Other Half’s Dark Ageism, a culmination of the three-part saga known colloquially by no one as the Big Twenty trilogy. For the uninitiated, Big Twenty is a fictional club inhabited by fictional people in a fictional city, a narrative device stolen from 1,000 better bands that allows us to inspect the grubbier aspects of our own lives without ever really committing to saying anything of real consequence. Smart.

Dark Ageism finds Steph, James, Mark and Ali (and by proxy, us) navigating what it means to be in their 30s and still doing the things they were doing at 18. Their own personal dark age, where the only things that seems to change is the price of a pint and how hard the guilt stings in the morning. Some cosmic debt for all the ruinous shit, I suppose.

I guess that also serves as a ham-fisted metaphor for us as a band; well over 10 years of little-to-no progression, churning out meat-and-spuds rock songs about the exact same stuff we did when we started out. Don’t mistake that for self-deprecation, most of our favourite bands did/do the very same thing. Not everything needs to be reaching for greatness, sometimes just doing the thing you love over and over again is a decent enough recipe for something resembling happiness.

Having said all this, a lot of Dark Ageism deals in the anxiety of being in a stupid punk band three albums in, something tailor-made to trudge up at least a few pointed questions about what you choose to do with your life. Being defined by something that most people bin off in their teens is a difficult sell to a world obsessed with ascending the big invisible ladder, but I’ve only ever found gutters at the top of ladders so, ya know, make what you will of that bitingly incisive analogy.

Without getting too cosmic, it doesn’t really feel like a choice either, more something we’re stuck in the orbit of, for better or for worse and that kinda worms it’s way into the record too. I certainly don’t believe in anything as daft as fate, but I do know there are an infinite amount of unseen systems and structures that dictate the direction your life goes in. It takes something earth-shattering to break that orbit, and most people never get the opportunity. That might sound bleak, and it is, but drudgery also conjures up connection and that’s the most precious commodity of all, maaaaan.

Anyway we hope you find something in Dark Ageism, whatever that may be. At its heart it’s a record about falling in love with the rut you’re in, and turning that rut into your bread and butter, or, depending on how you look at it, just a 12 track non-sequitur shit stream. We’ll let you decide.

Regress like you mean it.”