Asbest – Driven

Rating: 3.5/5
Distributor/label URL: /
Released: 2018
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Band line-up:

Robyn Trachsel: Vocals, Guitar
Judith Breitlinger: Bass, Vocals
Jonas Häne: Drums


1. Driven
2. Deceit
3. Means Of Reproduction
4. I Need A Spacesuit To Leave My Home
5. Chain Reaction
6. Pillar
7. They Kill
8. Persona Non Grata


Asbest (the German term of Asbestos) is a trio from Basel, Switzerland and were founded in November 2016 by singer and guitarist Robyn Trachsel, bassist Judith Breitinger and drummer Jan Häfele. In January 2018 Jonas Häne (Heavy Harvest) took the position behind the drums. They use a mix of post-punk, noise rock and shoegaze as an angry to desperate reaction to the general events of our time, but it also reflects Trachsel‘s personal experiences as a trans-woman in a cis- and heteronormative society.

Musically, this is a great album, I loved the sound that they created, the intensity and emotion of it all. Well all except for the vocals. The shouting and screeching of the lead vocals was ear-splitting and I could barely take it. Yes I get it, you have something to say and you want to be heard, but how about trying not to annoy the listener? “Chain Reaction” has some good vocals in it, but the shouting/screeching is also there and it could have been better without it. The bass lines at the beginning of “Driven” were thick and I loved them, as well as the rest of the music on that track. The sound is thick, kind of like running through waist-deep mud, but adds to the overall experience.

If they released this without vocals, or with tamed down vocals, I would give this a perfect score… Sadly, that won’t happen.

Review by Rick Ecker