They sound French but they come from Los Angeles. Touché Amoré is often mentioned in the same breath as their contemporaries La Dispute, Defeater and Pianos Become The Teeth as figureheads of The Wave, a loose alliance of Californian post-hardcore bands. What connects them is high intensity and an experimental urge. The first albums by Touché Amoré tend towards despondency with such themes as anxiety, alienation and death. Their latest, ‘Lament’ (2020), is presented as the light at the end of that dark tunnel. Musically, however, it’s still a rugged affair. As well as post-punk, indie and post-rock, some surprising influences have crept in such as Leonard Cohen and The National. It’s this desire to do things a little differently that connoisseurs and fans say keeps the quintet head and shoulders above the rest.