Boomkat Product Review:
15th anniversary edition repress of HTRK’s achingly scuzzy debut album, ‘Nostalgia’ from Fire Records
Recorded and self-released in 2004, HTRK’s ‘Nostalgia’ is a far, far more gristly and cranky beast than they have become. Essentially plying a form of modern, post-industrial deathrock tempered by trip hop and shoegaze, their form of “nostalgia” feels preserved in salt and smoke, sweetening and toughening the meat of their music but also making it palatable to a generation who, by 2004 had grown weary of rock clichés and really needed a stronger taste for their worn out palates, which HTRK surely catered for.
Arriving with one of the best band names on the bleeding planet, HTRK - pronounced HATE ROCK - vampired the essence of Suicide, Joy Division, TG and more locally The Birthday Party, and distilled it to a potent solution that works both as intoxicating options for escapism and a fix for the bloated corpus of a dying (dead?) rock music. Sadly they would be followed by the shadow of death in coming years, with the passing of then band-member Sean Stewart and their future mentor, Roland S. Howard (The Birthday Party) both passing in 2009 circa their 2nd album, but the way they nihilistically peered into the abyss on ‘Nostalgia’ remains testament to the grippingly abrasive and unshakeable conviction of their early sound.