Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Directions In Music

Bouncing us back down to earth and screaming straight into the gutter with a brutally bone juddering bump...  It's the Cattlepress/Agoraphobic Nosebleed split LP on Bovine Records from 1997.  Cattlepress have first dibs on dishing out the initial pulverisation of pulpy plebian parts with six tracks of downtuned devilish delight.  Frequently shifting their tempos to achieve the maximum crushing capacity and generally heaving into a heavy sludgy swing as often as proceedings permitted.  But, The Cattle Press Hordes were never afraid to speed things up whenever it became necessary to grind your trivial cranium to a fine dandruffy powder!  Perhaps best epitomised on the final track 'Splint' where they combined discordant death metalish riffing with slow doomed out trudges and ground out grisly grooves.  Infusing them with the ire and raw, immediate intensity of hardcore, bringing their formula headswingingly close to near perfection (if that's your particular bag of course).  Next off the blocks, it's Agoraphobic Nosebleeds all round and eighteen tracks of relentlessly razor sharp riffola.  The drum machine absolutely sledgehammers the blast through all the songs, leaving percussively inclined human aspirants cowed into tremblingly abject submission!  This was the transitional period before Jay Randall stepped in to start lacerating his larynx and they went into drug addled abstract nihilist hyperdrive.  So, Aaron from Ulcer/Paindriver (later in Isis, Old Man Gloom and running Hydra Head Records etc) and Sean from Thug (and Bovine Records) provided all the unhinged roaring, grunting and shrieking that you could reasonably expect.  I gotta say tho, I find myself coming back to their earlier, stripped down shit more frequently these days.  Especially compared to the 'too many cocks spoil the brutal broth' all out sensory overload they eventually became.  Not that adding/cramming more elements to the mix in an effort to progress is inherently a bad thing, not at all..  But in their case it always seemed more effective when they took the throat slittingly direct approach...  

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