Moving from guttural screams and brutal guitar riffs to jazz-inflected math rock time signatures in the blink of an eye, Australian punk outfit Totally Unicorn made a name for themselves with their uncompromising live shows and fierce sound, from their punishing 2010 debut to their more experimental 2018 album Sorry.
Formed in 2010 by Drew Gardner (vocals), Michael Bennett (drums), Clancy Tucker (guitar), and Robert Mudge (bass), the quartet quickly put out their debut EP, Horse Hugger, just a few months after they formed. At the beginning of 2011, Mudge announced his departure from the band and was replaced by Tim McMahon after a tour with Aussie punks Frenzal Rhomb. Rounding out the year with a triple-headline tour with Gay Paris and God God Dammit Dammit, the trio of bands also issued the split EP Totally Gay Dammitt. 2012 saw the release of the phallic-shaped vinyl single “7 Inches” and the departure of original guitarist Tucker. Live dates followed with Pour Habit, Mad Caddies, and the Flatliners, while Tucker was replaced by Aaron Streatfeild and Kerim Erkin, both on guitar. At the beginning of 2016, after the departure of McMahon — who was replaced by Snakes Get Bad Press’ Lee Nielson — the group signed to indie label Farmer & the Owl before releasing their debut album, Dream Life, a few months later. More lineup changes came the following year with drummer Bennett calling it quits, replaced by Robotasaurus’ Adam Myers, and Erkin also left, turning the group back into a four-piece. They continued to play live, heading out on a national tour with Frenzal Rhomb, as well as support slots for the Dillinger Escape Plan. With the lineup now solidified, the group entered the studio to record their sophomore album. Preceded by the single “Grub,” Totally Unicorn issued their second full-length, Sorry, at the beginning of 2019. ~ Rich Wilson, Rovi