without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
I have to say, when I first heard this album I was slightly overwhelmed. That is to say, it was all a bit over my head. Not that I didn't 'get' it, but it was such a throbbing, crackling wall ov noise that I could only listen to it a few times then put it aside for other music.
I still felt there were secrets yet to be unearthed however, so one day I got stoned and decided to give this album a close listening. This means through headphones, bass turned up, and with booklet in hand to read the lyrics along with the songs. This turned out to be a good idea since the lyrics turned out to be one of my favorite aspects of this album.
The songs are each a self contained short story telling the tale of various misanthropes, miscreants and of course, cretins, engaging in everything from torture (Tazer), to coprophagia (Cook The Cupcake) to extreme body modification (Object Of Utility). All with a deep vein of black humour running throughout. These guys definitely have a way of telling a story that makes you want to know the ending and the fate of that characters in the story. They're sort of like a modern day version of the old EC horror/comedy titles of the 50's, with the singer, Dan Martinez, as a Matt Olivio sounding Crypt Keeper narrarating the stories with gusto. These songs are nowadays fables for the feeble minded, with a pre 90's grindcore soundtrack.
The music itself is pure, blastbeat driven grindcore. Nothing more nothing less. It's your basic Repulsion worship is the best way I can put it, with a slight euro influence. The Repulsion like sound is a huge breath of fresh air in a scene innudated with Carcass-clones, Anal Cunt wannabes, and just rehashed Napalm Death riffs. What is ironic is that an album sounding like Repulsion would be the freshest thing I've heard all year.
The blastbeat is the de facto drum beat, expertly executed one footed by Col Jones with plent of thrash and skank beats thrown in here and there for dynamics. The guitar tone is beefy as hell, and a bit reminiscent of old Entombed! There are solos hear and there, not in every song but in most, of the Rick Rozz and Bill Steer on Reek Of Putrefaction school. Short, noisy whammy bar driven squeal beasts. The bass is audible on this album, though you have might have to turn it up a little. And what a bass sound it is. A beautiful distorted growl. The bassist Matt Widener even has some bass solos as well which is pretty unexpected on a grindcore album, but not unwelcome. The guys in the band really know their way around their instruments.
The only problem I have with this album is that it's too short. Then again, it's not really a problem since the 30 minute running time of the album is the perfect length for a grind album. Too much longer than that and ones attention might start to wander from the sheer overwhelming sonic assault.
This album is a retro-scented breath of fresh air that doesn't advance the genre in any way whatsoever, yet still manages to be the freshest sounding american grind album in years. It's my personal album of the year.