As I prepare to head out on another trip to the riff-filled land, Heavy Days In Doom Town in Copenhagen, I thought I'd give some lip-service to one of the bands I'm looking forward to seeing the most in the next week;
A friend from that side of the planet (Meth Drinker hail from New Zealand) sent me the video for their track 'Combat Shock' and I was immediately on board.
Opening with a sample from the movie of the same name, when the music kicks in you'd swear you'd unearthed a lost classic from the nascent birth of sludge, that you'd just prised out a dusty mixtape from some scumbag's boombox that'd lain unused since 1993. The track ends with some warped, warbling, evil sounding Casio.
I fucking love when people know me well enough to send me shit like this.
Shortly after playing this track over and over on repeat, it was announced they'd be the support on Graves At Sea's first European tour and that they'd also be playing Doom Town, the fest I was spending my very last money to get to. Fuck yeah.
It wasn't 'til now that I managed to snare myself a copy of their full-length record, it's goddamn hard to track down since it's an edition of only 300. After seeing the words SOLD OUT on absolutely every distro I could find, I managed to snag the last copy from Mordgrimm.
Side A opens with 'Deprivation', all ominous fuzz and sampled screams. When everything comes together it sounds like New Zealand's answer to Noothgrush. It's impossible not to play Guess The Influence with this record, though the band themselves are open about their more blatant inspiration.
'Incurable Illness' begins with the pounding of drums, before Meth Drinker achieve what so few bands manage, and actually create a tune from the atonal. They wield feedback as a weapon, the discordance creating real discomfort, as opposed to all those Southern Lordcore bands who just throw it on top to disguise their lack of riffs and to make themselves sound like more than the hardcore bros with HM2s that they are.
Towards the end of the track the guitar cuts out long enough to let the bass prowl/growl menacingly.
'Ganja Mutt' is a mangy beast of a track, staggering on it's last legs, hoarsely barking it's last. About halfway through the guitar takes on a Dystopian tone before it drones into 'Combat Shock'.
Flip the side and you'll be confronted with the Iron Monkey-esque assault of 'Skull Smashing Concrete'. It's fucking good. In-depth reviewing skills, huh?
Next up they screech out a take of 'Dies Irae', the opening music from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining. Considering it's one of my favourite movies of all time, I am very fucking into this. The Melvins also did a cover of this on their 'Nude With Boots' album.
More droning, eerie versions of horror movie soundtracks please.
'Serrated Corridor' sounds just as rusty and jagged as its title, a few minutes of agonising creepy crawl. There is probably a deep-seated psychological reason I enjoy putting myself through this filth, but I'll happily remain untreated if it means I get to torture my eardrums with the Dystopia-worshipping second half of the track.
'Broken Down & Used Up' is how you're gonna feel by the time you reach this final track. I dread to think how I'll feel after seeing this band live in a few days. Probably being covered in filth and full of substances would be appropriate.
If you're at Doom Town and you see the guy with the death-doom denim who's barely clinging on to his sanity, buy him a beer because he'll be broke and broken.
You can check out their discography here:
And you can keep up with their tour dates and shit here: