Posts Tagged ‘Nasty’

Thrill Jockey Records – 17th November 2017

Christopher Nosnibor

The second collaborative album between The Body and Full of Hell, which collides with the earth like a meteor, and a mere 18 months after its predecessor, and just six months after Full of Hell’s full-tilt annihilation that was Trumpeting Ecstasy, it’s every bit as unremitting and remorselessly heavy as anything previous. It’s the sound of two uncompromising bands finding compromise by amplifying one another to the nth degree, meaning that Ascending a Mountain of Heavy Light is fucking intense, fucking heavy, and yes, even more fucking intense.

The accompanying blurb forewarns that ‘samples, synth, saxophone, and a drum orchestra all throb, and sputter, coagulating under the weight of the two bands. Programmed drum patterns and loops taking cues from hip hop are bent and twisted throughout, flawlessly emboldening the distortion drenched guitars and howling vocals.’ And did I mention that it’s intense?

Beyond the first few seconds of skittering synth oscillations, there is no light on the opening track, ‘Light Penetrates’. The crushing power chords land at tectonic pace, while the vocals – an impenetrable scream of anguish – are nothing more than a primal scream of pain. And then the jazz shit beaks loose, with horns squealing like tortured pigs bleeding in all directions.

There’s nothing pretty about this, but occasionally, from amidst the screeding walls of amorphous racket emerge full-throttle stoppers, like the pounding ‘Earth is a Cage’. Elsewhere, ‘Didn’t the Night End’ is a snarling, grinding, bowel-shaking racket of surging waves of noise that simply hurt. It’s the kind of snarling, grinding, bowel-shaking racket that makes you want to lie on the floor and curl up into a foetal position. It makes you want to die, and it certainly makes you long for the night – and the noise – to end, as it assails the senses from every angle.

The drum intro is nabbed from oh, so many tracks – a simple four-four thump of a drum machine bass – before everything explodes in a tempest of screaming industrial-metal fury. Early Pitchshifter come to mind, at least in the drum programming, but this is something altogether more psychotic in its unbridled fury, and in its amalgamation of paired-back hip-hop and industrial metal, all crackling with overloading distortion, ‘Master’s Story’ invited comparisons to the innovations of Godflesh – at least until it goes all crushing doom halfway through.

As with anything produced by either band, either independently or collaboratively, Ascending a Mountain of Heavy Light is not music for pleasure, and large chunks are little short of anti-music, blistering walls of sonic brutality built on discord with the most challenging of tones and frequencies explored to the max.

AAA

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Orchestrated Dystopia – 1st October 2016

Christopher Nosnibor

Another release it’s taken me four months to review, and for no reason than that I’ve been utterly swamped and a little disorganised, both in terms of my time management and my thoughts. Such is the life of an unpaid music reviewer who stumbles in from working the day-job to be greeted by around twenty emails each evening and a bundle of CDs on the doormat, all demanding attention.

Somewhat ironically, this latest offering from Italian band Humus, purveyors of nasty metal noise, is one of the shortest releases – including singles – I’ve had come my way all year, with the running time for these four tracks totalling barely a fraction over five minutes.

We’re in authentically brutal, crusty, grindy d-beat metal territory here. The guitars a dirty, murky, churning mess, the drums a frenzied thousand-mile-an-hour tempest. The bass is all but lost in the frenetic, furious low-fi treble fest, while the vocals are all about that snarling, strangulated, torn-throat demonic rage, the sound of one of Satan’s minions gargling nitric acid while dancing over hot coals en route to a purgatorial abyss.

It’s dark, the sound of burning rage, a blurring welter of relentless noise. Keeping the songs savagely short and the production mercilessly raw, it’s everything you would want from a band who trade in thrashcore crustpunk.

 

Humus