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Nightslug – Loathe

Dig your teeth into the concrete and prepare to be curb stomped until your skull is nothing but fragments by  Nightslug and their new release, Loathe. This German trio play a style of sludge metal that is very crusty, very vile and, although this should go without saying, very heavy. The band puts a lot of their contemporaries to shame with this unapologetic, grim and grueling variant of doom of gloom that really shouldn’t exist by the laws of metal nature. But it does exist and we have to deal with its unyielding force. Loathe‘s seven-track, 32-minute onslaught drags you by throat through gravel and broken glass and eventually to your death. Thundering bass lines and towering, gargantuan riffs collide head on with piercing feedback and hate-filled vocals on opener “Vile Pigs” as the record trudges forward into more destructive territory. The album refuses to let up as the title track stampedes into your eardrums with pummeling, crusty chord progressions and the slow-burning “The Thrill is Gone – Repulsion” buries you underneath its insurmountable weight. The shorter tracks like “Under a Bane” show off the band’s tendency to dive into more hardcore territory without shedding their exoskeleton of nihilistic sludge and noise, while the longer, sprawling tracks like “Disease” rely on tension and fiery release to get their point across. Of course you have to have the disturbing, oddball track on an album like this, which is where “Pure” comes in. The track revolves around a repetitive, 80’s Swans-esque bass line while layers of disorienting, creepy sounds and noise pile on top of it. It may seem unfair that you only get a half-hour of Nightslug. But I am convinced if the album was any longer, those with heart conditions may be in a bit of trouble.If you don’t have a heart condition then I would recommend you check out Loathe ASAP.

Rating: 8/10
Label: Broken Limbs/Dry Cough/Lost Pilgrims
Release Date: June 9, 2015
Favorite Tracks: “Vile Pigs”, “Under a Bane” and “Disease”
For Fans Of: Seven Sisters of Sleep, Fister, Usnea, Primitive Man and Ilsa


Coordinated Suicides – Morals/Lychee

Morals/Lychee cover art

If Bleach-era Nirvana, Flipper and similar noise/punk artists had a child together and that child dabbled in all sorts of illicit substances, you would get Coordinated Suicides. Coordinated Suicides (Pink City, etc) is a Madison, Wisconsin trio whose debut full-length record, Life Is Beautiful, is due out later this year. To build anticipation for the album, the band have released two cuts from the record titled “Morals” and “Lychee”. Both tracks will satisfy lovers of early grunge and noise rock of all shapes and sizes. “Morals” comes rushing out of the gate with a undeniably catchy, groovy bass line that struts about with a menacing swagger. When the caustic guitars and throat-searing vocals hit, the track becomes a wondrously maniacal mess. Next, “Lychee” creeps in and increases the noise and the psychopathy. Pulsating bass lines writhe underneath a fragile verse riff and masses of dissonance and disorienting noise. The track becomes more and more disfigured as it progresses before finally ending in a swell of warped, guitar-generated noise and a single, repetitive piano note. These songs are marvelously messy, eccentric and raw as all get out. If this is just a taste of Life Is Beautiful, then I would imagine the whole product is completely deranged.

Rating: 7/10
Label: Self-released
Release Date: May 16, 2015
For Fans Of: Nirvana, Flipper, Cows, Cherubs and The Jesus Lizard


Keeper – The Space Between Your Teeth

The Space Between Your Teeth cover art

Listening to Keeper‘s The Space Between Your Teeth is akin to being trapped inside of a collapsing building in which there are no exits in sight and you are forced to make peace with whichever deity you choose as it all comes crashing down upon you. Overly dramatic? Perhaps, but it doesn’t change the fact that this release is heavy beyond measure. The Californian doom duo have crafted two lengthy opuses collectively totaling 33 minutes. The length may be menacing to some, but these doomsayers make sure that the music is all-enveloping and entrancing. Before you know it, all 17 minutes of opening track “The King” have flown by. Sprawling, avalanche-causing guitars are met with quaking percussion and are propelled by torturous, snarling, animalistic vocals. Despite its overbearing weight and oppressive heaviness, “The King” is brimming with beautifully melancholic melodies. In contrast, “The Fool” takes the EP into darker territory. While melody can still be heard, it is overpowered by an unshakable sense of dread. The apocalyptic, dismal instrumentation absolutely decimate everything around it and leave no possibility for life to flourish after they have ravaged the land. These two tracks make me hungry for a full-length recording from these two phenomenal musicians. If The Space Between Your Teeth is any indication of what’s to come next from Keeper, you better have a doctor on speed-dial.

Rating: 8/10
Label: Crown and Throne Ltd.
Release Date: April 1, 2015
For Fans Of: Thou, Cough, Yob and Indian


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