‘Better Living’ (Sweatshop Records/One Little Indian)
If ‘Better Living’ holds the key to Flats’ manifesto for a finer way of life, then they’re not too keen to give away their ideas. Deciphering the Enigma machine would seem like a walk in the park compared to figuring out what the fuck has got Dan Devine so riled up. His throat-shredding and indistinguishable vocals characterize the album, filling in the gaps between menacing guitar lines (check out ‘Foxtrot’ for a sinister starter) and pummeling drums with saliva-splattered screams of anger (‘Slam’s’ “no regrets until tomorrow” is a particularly pointed one). Raw, exhilarating and completely mystifying.