Stress Orphan’s Reviews for February 2021
by Eric Trude
Unless otherwise noted, every review is a recommendation. Links to buy will be provided if the release is still available. Reviews will come from a combination of new and used music that I bought or received throughout the month. If you’re buying older stuff used please haggle with all sellers aggressively. Taint’s amazing but he’s not 150 dollars amazing for 1 album.
Noise is for the people, it’s the people’s noise.
If you know anything about Midwest extreme tunes, you know about Brandon Hill. Shredding in Cloud Rat, endless heat from Starved Relations, Brandon is as consistent a harsh head as they come. And the peak of his diverse portfolio of rippers is Plagues. On Old Hands, Plagues brings some frigid electronics. So cold you’d swear they dug it out of the upper peninsula. This isn’t black noise, or creepy dungeon synth, or withdrawn death industrial. And yet it pulls highlights from all those styles to create a truly engaging and hateful soundscape. Clocking in at about 15 minutes, nothing overstays its welcome and I found myself reaching for my tape shelves to throw on another Plagues as soon as it ended. Taken with the Nefarious Activities 3” CDs last year, Plagues is one of the best going in the States today and he doesn’t get nearly enough credit. Infernal Hails.
This is a different one. Rotting Angel is yet another new project from Fusty Cunt. Not sure if this is a new name for someone I’ve heard before or someone new altogether. Plucking cool new shit out of obscurity has been a specialty of Fusty for years that I wish more people would at least try to emulate. To open, this tape offers an A side that is 12 blurry minutes of lo-fi, smeary death industrial. Vocals or something like it, and whips of harsh tones you’d almost expect to hear from Pain Jerk, cut through from time to time to keep you on your feet, but always subsides with time to the original sludge. Side B changes it up, introducing pulsing, hypnotic loops to the sound that help bring this tape in for a landing. Whispered vocals chant lines like a mantra, using the “if we do it enough it gets good again” theory of composition to great effect. Overall a very creepy tape that’s off the beaten path for the style. Absolutely worth picking up. It comes packed like meat, in a tray and everything. Very fun.
This is a comp but honestly it doesn’t matter who is on it. All the bands are great noisecore bands, the music is great you’ll love it. Reanimated Miscarriage is just about the best name going for pure noisecore sleaze, you buy from him you know what you’re getting. And this is 100% in line with the quality of product that has been coming out of that label for years. Where this tape shines, and why I’m reviewing it, is just how fucking funny it is. There are parts of this that had me laughing out loud. Busting on mall goths and metal heads between ludicrous noisecore explosions. Far too often experimental music is presented with an absolutely joyless energy. Yeah, everything sucks and you’re sad who gives a fuck. Who needs another tape about war or nature? Nobody, that’s who. What we do need is noisecore comps in big VHS boxes full of sketches about hating riffs and old school death metal. Comps that carry on the spirit of spilled bong water and PBR farts that make 90s noisecore so fucking fun to listen to. Lighten up, dude.
It was really hard picking one item to review from the pack I got from OFR. I was initially going to cover the Chaos Cascade tape Melodies of Misogyny. You can see my general thoughts on them fucking ruling and being one of the most innovative projects in PE today in my Top 5 of 2020 article from a few weeks back. Rest assured its great and everything good I said about the CD is true about this tape too. I want to continue the theme of music having a good time, so I’m going with the Pee & Poop boys cartoon porn CD. I think that this is hands down the best material from either project. Its so fucking thick and loud. Its got bass you could bounce a quarter off and some seriously grating highs. Its well-paced and well edited, all meat and as little bullshit as PE can get away with. I also want to commend Scatmother on having consistently better vocal performances each album. When he has the mic on this shit he is a force to be reckoned with. He’s got some serious pipes. My favorite part about this album though is that if I didn’t know what it was called I’d never guess it’d be about cartoon porn. But it is. And that is fucking funny. They have piss and scat in the name, its not serious. But it is seriously good music. That is a hard balance to strike.
This batch of reviews is having a theme, I guess. Gay Death is amazing. One of the things that always stops me from getting into Whitehouse is that Whitehouse is funny, but Whitehouse doesn’t know what parts of it are funny. It has spawned generation after generation of extreme music fans that don’t laugh when they hear the name Con-Dom. Con-Dom is funny, and Whitehouse doesn’t really seem to get that. Gay Death does. Gay Death is every great element of Whitehouse presented by someone who knows what’s funny about it. Gets that it is a joke. Gets that the fashion is half the vibe sometimes. Gets that the lyrics are dumb beyond dumb. And does it all while fucking shredding. Yet another entry in the Austin, TX Funny Noise Hall of Fame. I really don’t even tolerate someone trying to tell me BRR wasn’t hilarious and amazing. It was. It was a high-water mark of quality in the genre while making a mockery of it. The only people who disagree are allergic to fun. Gay Death brings the same quality of material and wit to a vintage PE sound that BRR brought to pedal smashing harsh noise. I’m sure I’ll end up picking some folded arms tough guy horseshit for album of the year but right now this is my favorite PE album of 2021.
I can be a little picky about my Sissy Spacek sometimes. Sometimes it hits right and other times I’m not sure. But there’s no need to be picky here. Both sides of this 7 are pure, high-gauge noisecore rippers. Really heavy sound, a nice vocal variety, big tone on the blasts. Love it. It’s a 7 inch so there’s not too much to say, but copies are still available from the label so go out and get one.
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