Hot Work - 'Boys Club'

A musical expedition that stands strong because of its introspective concept. A reflective point of view openly explores the traits of toxic virility, an aspect which should be explored to learn about such primitive human behaviour that is, in some cases, associated with violence.

Starting with music, you get to a dip in the pool of glittering, shining melodies and thoughtfulness that is explored through uncomplicated lyricism. With a fast-paced song like 'Baby Boy', you are on a speedy free-fall with no parachute in familiar retro/vintage style music. Thin electric guitar tones amplify the energetic vibe beyond just a mere distortion. 

Continuing the pace, 'Pretty in Pink' brings you the twangy, bright sound of guitars expanding over a spring reverb. You'll get to hear a great manifestation of the iconic 60s surf rock genre from here onwards. The composition has so much that is new to offer over the acquainted nostalgic impact. Sonorous sweetness in characteristics uplifted by wild variations gives you a full surprising experience. Alongside clean and transparent tones, soothing pitch slides on the guitar glow inside your headroom. Vocals leave a strong mark just like they did previously. Drums are totally on fire befriending the flawless organic Bass to ignite the depth of sound with warmth while crushing the explosive lightspeed rhythm.

With a seamless transition, the sailing boat of 'Boys Club' touches the coast at 'The Problem Pt1' and 'The Problem Pt2'. Following the predefined style, you are introduced to a shared space of subtle narration alongside a precious voice that touches the core essence of the meaning behind this song. Pt1 slowly ends its mellow flow bringing back the heart-racing, the beautiful and tuneful chaotic beginning of Pt2. Both parts are interconnected musically as well as lyrically, sharing a unified thought.

Harmonious widespread vocal harmonies cover a broader part of these fascinating, carefully knitted compositions. 'Blame Games' is one such song with amazing vocal performance. The dual vocals share consonant notes and cover a challenging expansive range. This slow track holds the meaning that is summed up in its title but expressed in a way that leads to addressing the source of pain in the context of the album. Musically and lyrically, the climax of this song is fantastically executed.

'I Lost Myself' introduces percussions, an add-on that boosts not just the unique rhythm but synchronises the hypnotic beat with other instruments as well. A small detail in this song is how guitars are mimicking the arrangement of vocals including the drowsy psychedelic portamento. Like a theatre drama full of stupefactions, this song works its magic, but as you understand the words, and slowly realise the gravitas of the idea behind this track.

'Denial' is akin to an intermission, so get some snacks because it's going to go totally crazy in 'Privilege of a Man'.

'Privilege of a Man' is back to moshpit and headbanging music, we are reaching the peak of that classic hot distortion dripping from the guitars. One hell of a guitar performance is awaiting you in this song with powerfully blasting drums and bass. Breathless and lyrically supercharged, the vocals hold the ability to bring a storm. 

Pushing the blasting power, 'Just Don't Know' reaches a new height of renditioning in the narrative, keeping the fearless march of digging through toxic masculinity while retaining the flow of the previous track. The 'Sea of Despair' touches one of the sides of an afflicted mind. The music has a feeling of letting go of one's self, exploring a conflict within that has given birth to sadness. To be closer to the exact meaning, a despairing thought that is born from regret or driven by an identity crisis.

'The Grind' is a short filler but has an important context that explores another sentimental part of this topic. What happens when a man who is brought up, or chooses traditionally to stick to outdated cultural norms which require extreme domination to prove superiority further leads to violence, the need for physical or emotional control, an obsession with achieving victory, or higher social status, gets drunk and drops the 'tough guy' mask to reveal the hidden within, to maintain it, and the misery that follows. The song also hints that such 'tough guys' hold a strong belief in their toughness, completely unaware of it hurting their mental health and others. The song has few words in the form of a small incident that explores this context but it truly explains itself.

Ending with 'One Day', an insightful moment of enlightenment. Accepting a walk on a learning curve and being honest about not yet having enough maturity, this song is a perfect sunset on the horizon of self-awareness. Brass has a special appearance here, with a slow and steady pace followed by all the elements. A subtle touch of piano and organ is also present here, adding more love to the melody. The song also tells you that there should be an effort to accept the change required for the betterment of everyone starting with one true self.

Definitely listen to 'Boys Club' by Hot Work on Spotify.

About Hot Work:

"Hot Work was founded by four men from Sydney’s Inner West who bonded over a penchant for surf rock and contempt for the patriarchy. Fusing sun-drenched rock, punk, doo-wop, and psychedelia, they have a vintage sound with a decidedly 2022 message. Debut concept album Boys Club is an unflinching exploration of toxic masculinity – and a gutsy, infectious sonic ride."

Hot Work Band

From left to right: Riley Pierce (drums), Jack McPhee (bass), Michael van Dyk (vocals/guitar), Liam Wilson (guitar/slide)

"Sydney-based Hot Work released their debut feminist post-surf punk album "Boys Club" (out 21st of October via Pay No Attention Records). "Boys Club" is a 12-track concept album that rages against toxic masculinity. It is a story of accountability, education, and growth, ultimately ending with a message of hope for the future.

"This fantastic studio work is a perfect example of what this band is all about in terms of personality and inventiveness, highlighting their remarkable ability to seamlessly open up to different creative ideas and take their music to a whole new level." - Bandcamp Diaries 2022

Hot Work is a 4-piece surf punk band hailing from Sydney's Inner West. Formed in 2018, Hot Work fused sun-drenched rock, punk, surf, doo-wop and psychedelia creating a vintage sound with a decidedly 2022 message."