4th Album from Desperate JournalistIt was a damned Good Friday, as Easter 2021 saw the return of noirish alt. Goth roustabouts DESPERATE JOURNALIST, who piled back into the eerily empty marketplace with a brand new single called 'Fault' on April 2nd. 'Fault' is the first track to be hauled from Desperate Journalist's thoroughly forthright fourth album, 'Maximum Sorrow!', recorded entirely in Crouch End in the midst of the Covid pandemic. Driven along by Simon Drowner's ear-popping bassline, 'Fault' finds the quartet in impeccably brutalist form, all banshee howls and self-lacerating lyrics from singer Jo Bevan: "And those teenage hangups are hard to beat / When your closet is piled up with defeat," she snaps at one especially prickly point, as alongside her guitarist Rob Hardy and drummer Caz Hellbent can only add fiery fuel to the sonic flamings. It fits, too: like much of the rest of the album 'Fault' is both playful and, like the finest public house pint glass, half-full of rage; where swirling 'Heart Of Glass' synths are serenaded by shattered lyrics and 'Poison Pen' manages to put down put-down lines like: "You are oh so tall and sesquipedalian," without somehow sounding like a pompous arse. Because this is Desperate Journalist in hyper-dynamic form, super sleek, but never sickly slick; ambitious and expansive, but still self-effacingly DIY to the core. If the 'Maximum Sorrow!' title is punchy then the music ripples with alt. #rock muscle built up over seven years of relentless gigging and releases, like a fierce panther on the prowl. There are traditional desperate journeys to the heart of darkness - check the doomily concise disintegrations of 'Armageddon' for starters. And there are brilliantly-lit light touches: the swooning elegance of 'Utopia', the sardonic melody rushing sass of 'Personality Girlfriend', the madrigal calm of 'Formaldehyde', a tragic finale on any other album but the opener here.