Friday, July 11, 2008

A Guilty Pleasure

It's been a nasty good time over the past week, though when I try to tell my friends about it, they either cringe in disgust, or smile out of shock. My omission, the new Cliteater album is great, not to mention finger-licking fun.

Extreme genres like gore/porno-grind gorge not only on controversial topics like death and murder, but also sexual violence. While this pushes against my musical limitations, I have to admit there is a part of me that believes these guys are joking around, especially with songs titles like “Bruce-Dick-In-Son?” It would seem obvious on one hand to take the genre as seriously as the Braindead flims that influence them.

At the same time, it’s not really hard to believe that people would be up in arms about an album titled Scream Bloody Clit. If the genre's intentions are real, I feel that the themes are justified, in the sense that they aren’t advocating sexual violence, but showing it’s horrible realities from a brutally uncompromising perspective. Though this might be an uncomfortable conversation topic, it's dismissal is what the genre is challenging. It reveals crimes committed in daily life, and silently tolerated, in the workplace, home, school, and church. The themes and imagery of extreme metal are both comically and essentially, a kind of radical protest, reflecting these horrible acts as an opposition to the solidarity between violent sexual deviance and social control.

Back to the lecture at hand…

Cliteater stick to their guts on Scream, blending gore tropes with early grind/punk inspired riffs. They choose not to blast along the entire way, which by comparative standards makes for a more accessible listening experience. They have added a new guitarist (Susan Gerl ), to beef up the guitar tone. It’s great to see women on the music side of Metal, especially in gore-grind, a sub-genre where men dominate gender identity. If you don’t know the name Joost Silvrants (Inhume), you don’t know guttural vocals. He possesses an obscene range, and I was blown away when I first heard that he doesn’t use any pitch shifting. On “Impulse to Destruct” Joost takes the opportunity during the bridge to just go schizophrenic at the helm, spitting and screaming in every direction. There are some pitch-shifting vocals, used by the guitarist (Ivan Cuijpers), and are placed as dynamic punches before the band plunges into sonic oblivion. The comedic series “Positive Aspects Of Collective Chaos,” is kept alive with "Part III," ending to the sound of an accordion. Cliteater also has done a consummate job at borrowing from other Metal genres to diversify the album, like thrash metal (“Your Mouth, My Seed”), death metal (“Obese Obsession”), and death n’ roll (“Pedophiliac Cult”). While Cliteater's themes might be hard to swallow and their sound might turn your stomach over, Scream Bloody Clit is a bloody good time.

I also wanted to briefly give some love to the new Prostitute Disfigurement album, Descedents of Depravity. The high point of the album are the guitars; the songwriting has great flow between the riffs and solos, each holding their own and while playing off each other. The drum performance provided by Michiel van der Plicht is relentless, and the vocals (Niels Adams), are more in the mid-range, which I think it's an overall improvement for the band. Descendents also rocks one of the my favorite song titles so far this year, with “Killing for Company.” Check these out.

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