“Crawling out of the darkness in early 2016, Houston’s Lace grabbed several lifetimes of depression, displacement, and outsider feelings, and stuffed them into one-minute blasts of brutal, lo-fidelity hardcore. Months after forming, their six song demo “My Mask Is Off” caught the attention of press and punks worldwide with its unrelenting power and unhinged non-production. The recordings were bleak, desperate and dripping with an almost starving urgency and that dark energy carried over into the band’s gratingly loud live shows. Still very much outside any scene or subculture, even in their own town, the band played rarely, toured minimally, and opened for like-minded acts like Total Abuse, Dropdead, Protomartyr, and Elysia Crampton when they rolled through Texas.
When the time came to record their first full-length album, Lace took an abrupt, defiant turn from the grainy hardcore of their demo, expanding both in terms of creative reach and production quality. On the 10 songs that make up “Human Condition”, Lace is still dealing in themes of antisocial lonerdom and crushing anxiety, and still blanketing their songs in swarms of feedback, speed and volume. Instead of sticking to any pre-explored style, however, the band meshes desolate hardcore angst with restless post-punk experimentalism and an unplaceable undercurrent of thoughtfulness that almost leaves an impression of a hope somewhere deep beneath the din. Everything is recorded in full definition, adding depth to pissed-off ragers like “Amnesia” or “Moral Trip” and peeling back layers of sound when the band does a 180 into eerie slow-burners like “Tension” or “Mapplethorpe (The Leper Song)”. Channeling the cryptic wandering of Swans or This Heat as much as they do the anger of Detestation, Lace offers an uncompromising and unapologetically challenging set of emotional hurdles to jump as the record quickly shifts moods.”