Acclaimed Chicago-based post-punk outfit and JOVM mainstays Ganser — founding members Nadia Garofalo (vocals, keys) and Alicia Gaines (vocals, bass) along with Brian Cundiff (drums) and Charlie Landsman (guitar) — can trace their origins back to when its founding members met while attending art school. Bonding over a mutual love of The Residents, outsider communities and the work of John Waters, the duo developed a hands-on DIY craftsmanship that eventually carried into their band: Each member of the post punk outfit shares writing duties and they collaborate on every aspect of their creative work, including videos, album art, merch and the visuals which often accompany their live shows.
Ganser’s 2018 full-length debut Odd Talk received widespread praise nationally and across the blogosphere with some critics comparing their sound and approach to Sonic Youth and Magazine. Thematically, the album focused on communication breakdowns — namely, the difficulties of being understood, avoidance, intimacy and avoidance.
2020’s sophomore album, the critically applauded Just Look at That Sky found the members of Ganser thematically probing the futility of striving for self-growth during chorus — all while evoking an all to familiar manic worry and generalized sense of existential dread and doom. It’s an album that accurately captures our slow-burning, omnipresent hellscape.
Besides last year’s Look at That Sky Remixes EP, the Chicago-based JOVM have been busy working on new material — including their Angus Andrew co-produced, three-song Nothing You Do Matters EP. The EP’s first single, the woozy and expansive ripper “People Watching” begins with a slow-burning and atmospheric, bass-driven intro before quickly morphing into a feverish thrash featuring slashing guitar attack, relentless four-on-the-four and squiggling bursts of electronics paired with Garofalo’s seething, irony-drenched delivery.
Arguably the most tense and uneasy song of their growing catalog, “People Watching” captures the mad and desperate senselessness — of well, just about everything right now.
Directed by Alicia Gaines and Nadia Garofalo, the accompanying video for “People Watching” employs the same LED Volume virtual “green screen” technology that’s used in shows like The Mandalorian: We’re thrown in the middle of a wintry and desolate bit of farmland, where we see an extremely nervous and uncertain Gaines, Cundiff and Landsman with shovels trying to bury a body — a body that turns out to be, Garofalo. It’s menacing yet there’s a campus sense of humor to the proceedings.
Nothing You Do Matters EP is slated for an October 5, 2022 digital release and a December 2, 2022 vinyl release through Felte Records.
Chicago quartet Ganser announces new EP
Nothing You Do Matters (produced by Angus Andrew of Liars), arriving October 5th on Felte!