“By shovelling fuzzed-up guitars and clattering drums down an acrid hole of industrialised post-punk, the Edinburgh based duo make for a welcome antithetical thrill compared to the city’s gentle folk exterior.”
Billy Hamilton, Radar
“This duo from Edinburgh are difficult. But sometimes difficult turns out interesting and exciting. Rather like The Fall, they are a band who don’t sound like they are playing the game.”
Rick Fulton, Daily Record
“From the initial strike of the snare, Peebles’ drumming and Allan’s musicianship made the little lager bubbles in my tummy pulsate with sheer delight… They were so self-assured that if a wet t-shirt contest had been on next to them, they would have drenched themselves in their own saliva and still been the highlight.”
Halina Rifai, Glasgow PodcART
“Heavy on the Shellac/Big Black influence, but with some melodic vocals thrown in too… It’s been a while since I’ve seen such a mesmerising way of playing, all fantastically-fast drum rolls and precision that suggests a military-esque level of practice.”
Mike Shields, Ninehertz
“Black International … could never be accused of making pretty music. All chugging rhythm and sneering vocal, the Edinburgh duo’s economic sound is reminiscent of the Seattle grunge scene – one song in particular is basically a male-fronted Babes In Toyland, with frontman Stewart Allan channelling some primordial howl about being unlucky in love. For much of their short set though it’s drummer Craig Peebles who commands the attention; throwing himself so intensely into his spare rhythms that his face is a show in itself.
Lisa-Marie Ferla, the Herald
“The Edinburgh duo, no strangers to music fans from the capital, prefer a more economical post-punk sound, driven by the forceful drumming of Craig Peebles and given added teeth by the fierce guitar and vocals of Stewart Allan.”
Chris McCall, The Skinny
“We’re carried along by the sheer drive of their energy.”
Tony Kiernan, Is This Music?
“These guys have got a bad attitude… and I like it!”
Vic Galloway, BBC Radio Scotland
“Pure, unadulterated energy”
Sam J. Valdes Lopez, Sloucher.org
Praise for In Debt:
“Black International have masterfully crafted a golden record that boasts quality and incredible savez-faire from start to finish… place In Debt in the growing list of best albums of this year.”
“The first thing that strikes the listener about this album is the sheer confidence these guys have in their sound. It’s obviously been well-honed on the live stage and they’ve been able to translate this onto disc. They obviously love their guitars but, rather than being self-indulgent, as so many bands are, they’re fresh in their approach and respectful of their own talents.”
Is This Music?
“Phrases like ‘muscular post-punk’ often get bandied about when people are talking about Shellac, and they belong to bands like Black International who, even during the slightly slower, more laid-back points like ‘Dread (Excerpt)’ or the glorious harmonised break in ‘Destruct-o-’, never lose their visceral energy or give the impression they’re trying to pander to anyone else’s agenda.”
Echoes and Dust
“You can’t help but enjoy their tales of relatively mundane, everyday experiences, made interesting by the use of unexpected metaphors. Stewart Allan is singing about things that everyone can relate to, independently of whether or not they’ve just had their heart broken, which makes this album relatively unique in terms of standing out from the crowd.”
“Black International’s new album, In Debt defies and transcends what stands for modern punk these days.”
“Black International seem intent on showing us all that a British band – Edinburgh to be precise – CAN hark back to Seattle circa 1991 and not sound total dross. Album of the Week.”
The Tidal Wave of Indifference
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- Sun 2013Black International, Fresh Eyes for the Dead Guy, Tribal Fighters
Jam Café, Nottingham, UK