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Hostile Architecture

by Ashenspire

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  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    black vinyl LP - printed inner sleeve with lyrics

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  • Limited Edition 12" Marbled White Vinyl
    Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Exclusive band copies of Hostile Architecture pressed on marbled white vinyl. Limited to 98 copies. Includes insert with lyrics.

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  • Limited Edition 12" Splatter vinyl
    Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Deluxe collector limited edition - clear vinyl with black and grey splatter - printed inner sleeves

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Capital’s pre-eminence made matter. Nailed to the high-rise, under the budgetary hammer. Do they sleep well, wrapped in irony? Better that than tangled in austerity. Better ours than their children in poverty. Tide over the tampered-with, until it’s their turn; A corner cut, a penny saved, Grenfell burns again and again and again! There’s worse than the pox for all these houses. The scaffolding holding the bread from their mouths as it rouses the worker to sell themselves short. Both foundation and corner-stone and entirely bereft of support. If I drink Tollen’s reagent, will I finally shine inside? And will I see myself as God sees me If I pour it in my eyes? Pour it in my eyes. All’s silent but for the rain; Weary lungs, asthmatic brain. And tell me, is this, now, the humour of it? Some architect’s great satire in prefabricated shit. The rot and the damp creeping in, every corner A reflection of the presupposed sin of every presupposed hoarder; Scrounger! Thief! Gangrenous scab! If the game’s afoot I’ll gladly lose the leg. This is not a house of amateurs. This is done with full intent. Always three months to the gutter. Never three months to the peak. Another day to grind your fingers for the simple right to eat. Always three months to the gutter. Never three months to the crown. Another deep breath of asbestos in a godforsaken town. Always three months to the gutter. Never three months to the top. Another set of fucking homeless spikes outside another empty shop. Always three months to the gutter. Never three months to ascent. This is not a house of amateurs. This is done with full intent.
Béton Brut 05:18
Spectral lines all ranked up on the cosmic bathroom countertop. Bloodshot eyes in a cracked mirror in the silence of a throbbing city club and the void. When I couldn’t see the stars, I stopped dreaming of space. Always keep the beaten path. Always keep a Straight face. This year’s galvanised me but zinc’s a drab-as limbo as any. Trading one grey for another. The music of the spheres spun in colours I had never dreamed of. I would be lustrous, I’d be rusting in lust. I would be wretched. I would be loved. Leaving home. Muscles knot my aching shoulder bones. Wash out my veins with the acetone. I wasn’t born in fear. There’s no self-loathing in my genes. But from when I could hear, I heard the hereditary; the poison of misogyny. An amateur wavering, thrust traversing the tripwire of masculinity. Dance, hummingbird! Can you dance? I had learned the steps before I could walk; I had learned silence before I could talk. Where are you, Orion? Into what abyss goes your hunt? To black depths I condemn ye, and raise up to the heavens new stars. Stare into that void all you like. It won’t meet your gaze; When you can’t see the stars you stop dreaming of space.
The white noise is wasting me. A thousand spinning plates and nobody’s doing the dishes. Breathe in, the body rises; exhale and the mind sinks. Cloying brains brought back from the brink, another stimulant, another drink. With coffee-stained nerves and finger-stained keys furrowing digital fields, hands lashed to the plough let it be this; let it be now. Searching for meaning in the depths of the well, in the wiring inside, in the ringing of bells. The coding of elegance, the gatekeeping of eloquence where sparking switchboards dazzle and dance into deference where starry eyes meet light pollution, where word of mouth meets gathered feet and dissolution. We’re each kept in the dark as the black-bagging begins, kicked out on the street for their sins. I won’t be dragging my feet any more than they’re dragged through the mud, hands riddled with wages; fists dripping with blood. Why do the hungry pick all the food? Why do the naked sew sequins, secluded in sweatshops? Why do the capitalists blame those without jobs? We’re all in, all in up to our necks; Horizons foreshortened with your nose to the ground. The wasting starts younger than birth; the coping narcotics bloom neglect and a face in the dirt. A beating to sate latent hurt. And, after all, things can’t get worse; when it’s the third time this year you’ve carried friends from a hearse. As if for hunger we yearn. As if to cauterise a burn. I gazed into the tubes to find reason and cathode rays beamed through my each, every nerve, Persephone. The natrescent glow of the after-dark Styx and skin of white phosphorus leave me transfixed on the monitor. And I see you there. And squinting revealing these pixels depicting your fear. The marble as cold as objectification. No will of your own. Still passed between unfeeling hands. With head to the glass, I wept.
How the mighty have vision; How they stand there, crestfallen At the works they have realised, As their pride and decorum Now become a reminder That those they hold in contempt Still need somewhere; Somewhere to shelter, When they run out of rent.
High tides. Titanic strides through twisted metal. Red Roads. Brought low. Once more into the breach. Up rusted rungs you reach, up blank stares you climb. UP, UP THROUGH RIME AND RUIN TIERS OF CONCRETE TEARS OF UNDOING Hostages all; at gunpoint they spun the wheel and hoped that what they had was sellable; one’s labour must be sellable. The violence goes deeper. Violence indelible. NO GREAT MEN ONLY THE GREAT MANY I have a feeling. I have a feeling that it’s falling apart at the seams; and that the people, and that the people in the gutters recognise their means. I hear the meaning. I hear the meaning of the whispers sprayed upon the doors. Now comes the hour; now comes the hour that the needle will pierce the spoken-for. Fuelled with your labour. Built with your bones. There are no great men. Only the great many.
Are you all in? All in closes copulating. All threaded screws to get you repopulating a choked engine of stupor and static. These days; may these days, as millstone collars, fail to drag us further down. While lashed; here while lashed to arsenic eating, sinking fast with leaden bones. All hosts; owning isn’t earning, it’s a wound open to sate the leech. O, lust; to gorge on endless blood, two thousand parasitic Billionaire men. With the workers bleeding, the horse is beaten. God forbid that you should ever want a home. “You’ll shine like a diamond when you’re down in the mine!” And if there’s any whose eagerness To trample beleaguered and Deteriorated outpaces their empathy; You’ll find a place in the ever-increasing; The holds over hollow-eyed hands, The flesh tearing flesh from the famished and failing; The Ouroboros, the unquenchable thirst. Crushing the heads of the last to be first. Gallows humour on the all-scaffold; all the world’s a stage on which the working class is hanged. They say men are hanged while meat is hung, but it’s apparent how the ones a-struggling, strung, are seen; so much brawn swinging from capital’s very beams. WE ARE THE CULT OF WORK WE ARE THE CULT OF LABOUR SOLD WE ARE THE CULT OF WORK WE ARE THE CULT OF SIPHONED GOLD
Palimpsest 03:05
This is where it starts; a sinecure sleight-of-hand to saturate postures with wormwood and gall. Settle with hatred and you’ll bow on command. Compromise doubly and compromise all. Fascism hammers out his hooks on scapegoat anvils beneath your nose. Perhaps your eyes will follow suit as your hearing, hearing, hearing fucking goes. This is where it goes; when breaking point’s reached the dry-rotted floorboards will always give way, and thus once again the sealed vault is breached in cycles and cycles of silent decay. Rot and negligence. Scarcity’s false, except for the truth; the Bindweed is once again taking root. I hope you like poverty, breathing in soot, and the taste of leather off Britain’s boot. Desperate times call for disparate measures. A few misdirections to change how the pressure discharges; I see the forked tongue in the ear of the strained and both barrels retrained on the ones in the margins. These dispossessed people, silver-eyed, glazed with a mirror of trauma, boats sunk in a wash of formaldehyde. The Tollen’s reagent scars the iris anew. So hold your tongue, or I’ll hold it for you! The violence is here. Modern Blackshirts in the streets. What good is civility in the face of a kerb full of teeth? ‘Tis no broken system; but the product of it. You cannot fix that which is working as intended. Gnashing-toothed printing press. Virulent. Caustic. They bound the fasces themselves. Sharpened the axe. Know this; they aren’t resting, nor reading the rules. They’re desperate for war; gagging for it. If it’s to be Cable Street again, we won’t win through debate. You can’t reason with malice. The fasces must break. If this is against the grain, then the blight really has set in. The furrowing of brows and the festering of blame. Misshapen and bent. It’s not the fucking corner shop that drives up your rent. They salted the soil! Buried up to your neck in the debts of your station. But this is where it ends. There’s no middle road. And I tell you; Get down off the fence before the barbed wire goes up.


‘HOSTILE ARCHITECTURE is a sonic exploration of the ways that subjects under late capitalism are constrained and set in motion via the various structures that uphold stratification and oppression in urban contexts. It is inspired by brutalist, postmodern and utilitarian architectural structures that are found throughout post-industrial cities, hauntological in nature, being designed to provide for the populace through affordable housing but ultimately cost-cutting exercises and unfit for purpose. The term hostile architecture refers to design elements in social spaces that deter the public from using the object for means unintended by the designer, e.g. anti-homeless spikes, which the album presents as emblematic of a foundational contempt for the poor and working class, an exemplification of a status quo fortified in concrete. The album invites the listener to explore the dissonance of these contradictions in their own circumstances and perhaps consider possibilities for a world beyond what Mark Fisher called “Capitalist Realism.”’
Tragic Heroin Video:


released July 18, 2022

Alasdair Dunn (Voice, Drums)
Fraser Gordon (Guitars, Voice)
James Johnson (Violin, Voice)
Matthew Johnson (Saxophone, Voice)
Scott McLean (FALLOCH, Rhodes, Prepared Piano)
Rylan Gleave (ALL MEN UNTO ME, T/B Voice)
Amaya López-Carromero (MAUD THE MOTH, S/A Voice)
Otrebor (BOTANIST, Hammered Dulcimer)
Production, Recording and Mixing Scott McLean at La Chunky Studios, Glasgow.
Mastering Brad Boatright, Audiosiege Engineering
Art and Layout Tobias Holmbeck


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Ashenspire Glasgow, UK

Always three months to the gutter.


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