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VANISHING LIFE – ‘Surveillance’ Album Review

VANISHING LIFE – Surveillance

vanishinglifeVanishing Life were formed in the muddy fields of Belgium during the Groezrock hardcore punk festival in 2014. They are often referred to as a hardcore “supergroup” as the band members include

Autry Fulbright of And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead, Walter Schreifels of Quicksand, Jamie Miller of Bad Religion and as Zach Blair of Rise Against, who offered his services side stage during the Descendents’ set.

Schreifels, who currently works with Dead Heavens, Quicksand, and Gorilla Biscuits took on the lead vocals for Surveillance and the band have produced a stunning album. From the bass guitar of the opening track The Realist it is clear that we are in for a real treat. The track is driven by the aforementioned bass throughout but evolves into a real corker of a song in a “Fugazi on speed” kinda way.  Next up is Outlier where the band channel a grungy, garage rock sound and add some raw aggression with some melody to create a new sound that is very appealing indeed!

The songs are well crafted, complex and varied. 17 is about one minute of spaced out electronic keyboards that are quite ‘trippy’ and with zero time to adjust, Seven Pointed Star hits hard with a hard and dirty guitar riff followed by echo infused vocals and a belting chorus reminiscent of The Pixies.

Vanishing Life sound fresh and confident and as though they are having great fun released from their “day jobs” – Painter hits with a Pearl Jam Backspacer approach and Pretty Ruined brings back the heaviest bass since Discharge and rocks along with a swaying melody that will have you stomping your feet!

There are thirteen songs on the album with extremely short tracks mixed in with efforts over four minutes. One of the longer tracks, Image shows the band at it’s best with intricate interplay between guitar, drums and bass underpinning a strong vocal melody. The track reminded me of Canadian noise merchants Metz.

The song Vanishing Life is breathtaking in both pace and execution. The vocals are different, higher pitched and more tortured than before. I was simply breathless as the song raced to a conclusion. Thinking Weightless continues the momentum and that Pixies atmosphere and People Running wraps up the three songs towards the end of the album by adding some Husker Du style. The penultimate track, 16 is just 58 seconds of ambient feedback with a foreboding feel and it sets the listener up for the final four minute plus final song. Big Other is a fitting finale building from a solo guitar to deep bass, psychedelic vocals and then take-off into a fast paced dynamo of a song.


Vanishing Life are bloody good , they know what they’re doing and they do it well…2016 punk rock at it’s best. More on the band here:- https://stuntcompany.com/vanishing-life/

Surveillance available here: – http://dinealonerecords.com/releases/surveillance/




Vanishing Life is:


Walter Schreifels – vocals/guitar (Quicksand, CIV, Rival Schools, Gorilla Biscuits)

Zach Blair – vocals/guitar (Rise Against)

Autry Fulbright – bass guitar (…And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead)

Jamie Miller – drums (Trail of Dead, Bad Religion)

Album: Surveillance