Album Review: The Staches – ‘Placid Faces’

The Staches are two girls and two guys from Geneva, Switzerland. Namely; Lise Sutter (Lead Vocal/Synth), Charlotte Mermoud (Bass/Vocal), Léo Marchand (Guitar) and Martin Burger (Drums). Their lyrics are belted out in English, the riffs are bold and the beat incisive. A primitive impulse makes itself felt through their music, demanding to be heard. Their PR Julien at Five Roses Press says the band resembles process resembles “a hermaphroditic, four-hemisphere’d brain, composing in unison, welding influences into their music and pouring over the progressive psychedelic, should the inspiration take them.

The bands total commitment to their cause is unrelenting, refuting normative trends blending together genres of Girl-Punk and Lo-Fi Pop music. Their sound is a face plant of mind melting Female vocal led post-punk, synth-psych, garage-rock. It strains, berserk with endlessly exuberant energy and youthful rebellion. Their anatomy fused at the core, honed in sonic battle with exhaustive tours of the US and Europe. Adventurous expeditions during which their stagecraft, song writing and production skills have advanced exponentially.

The Staches ‘Placid Faces’ LP is out now in dual format. Across the globe in vinyl via Bongo Joe Records and in the US on tape via Dumpster Records. It is an eleven track album of cultured cuts, seething lyrics, shredded guitars and chest crushing, asphyxiating basslines. A devilish compound bound together with lysergic synth lines and a kaleidoscopic, quintessentially punk ethos.

Ladies and gentlemen, we open communications with ‘Transistor’. Zombie surf rock riffs erupt from a psychedelic synth intro that bleeps in like Casio the friendly ghost. Spooky waves of tape delay and detuned staccato rhythms, heaven pads and humorous harmonies are akin to early Pixies and The Breeders. A short punchy number and we’re straight into ‘Smokey’ a grungey stoner trip of swirling samples and reversed echoed oscillations held in place by Burgers snare puncturing percussion.

‘End’ is a greasy shoegazer. Mermoud’s bassline is funky like 90’s indie and syncs perfectly with Marchand’s frantic guitar. Sutter’s ecstatic synth sizzles, elevating and opening ones mind. We’re left floating and rotating only realising this seconds before Marchand’s pumpkin smashing fuzz distortion pulls us back into doved up flight. ‘Space is a Lover’ blends early Joy Division industrial experimentation with Oingo Biongo dancability, and it’s great to see/hear that the band take not taking themselves seriously seriously.

The screw you satire and swagger of ‘Fury’, a stomping punked up shaker, doesn’t need much in the way of illustration. I imagine that this track is a highlight of the live show and a crowd rocker. ‘Sweet Shit’ is indeed that. A Mr. Bungle interlude, a moments lean up against the speaker to draw breath and wipe the sweat away from the brow, just briefly, before the next wave takes hold and we’re submerged again, brain deep in humans. ‘Inside My Grave’ is understandably claustrophobic and thankfully a short visit into a terror filled dimension. ‘I Don’t Bother’ has a Dre style p-funk synth line and a jangly riff, and is another example of how well the band do danceable despondency.

‘Plastic’ is fantastic. It’s somewhere in-between the Happy Mondays in its extended sway, The Cure in its bassline and Frank Black in guitar. It would easily be my favourite track on the album if it wasn’t for ‘Total Commitment’ which is my favourite track on the album. Super Nintendo fluctuating synth and pounding drums, the hypnotic mantra of Lise Sutter’s lyrical delivery and when the whole thing drops its and an intense amphetamine fuelled sonic rocket and that’s the ‘Truth’. The end.

Pick up the LP here:

Bongo Joe Records

Find out more about the band here:




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