If I were straight edge I’m sure there would be a lot more “edge” bands in my music library; hardcore is cool and they are plenty of edgecore bands out there that could satiate my thirst, so to speak. If I was a Christian (sike) there’d probably be a couple of holy moly heavy bands in there as metal is rife with bands holding up the horns (sike, again) for the Lord. I am neither of these. I love to drink and possess quite a skill for being able to do quite a lot of it. Why is this pertinent to Grind My Gears this week? Well, Feral Chaos also really like to drink. And they LOVE to play grind, the nasty kind you’d find in the bottom of a can used for sinking cigarette ends in.
It’s easy to forget about Finland as a source of fresh fallout soaked music because Rotten Sound are in their third decade of cultured, crust addled grind production. The heavyweights can take a break from the spotlight for fifteen minutes as Feral Chaos barge drunkenly through a self titled so good, I might even break a self inflicted edge period for it. Recorded over a few days in winter of last year, a very specific amount of alcohol was consumed during this period. And it shows. Not because the production is unprofessional or the performances lacking in drive, not at all. This is a hostile, barking piledriver of spit in your face, throw you through the wall modern grind. It just reeks of boozy, shameless fun too.
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If opening track “Exit Wound” were a drink it would be a glass filled with everything on offer behind the bar. There’s frenzied d-beats (rum), atypical entombedcore two chord riffs (beer and whisky chaser) and blind drunk, nail gargling vocals (unknown white spirits). A perfect cocktail of death, grind and crust tastes. It’s a perfect opener and one that whets the palette for everything else that is poured into your face. “Hollow Souls” slows things down with a beer and blunt dirge, the kind you need to step outside for; even for just minute, the maelstrom can get a bit much for the most hardcore rageaholic. “Prey” hits pause on the shots and sizzurp for another minute, this might be a soft drink break for someone unable to hold their beverages. This is the last break you get though, so shut up and finish that drink.
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By the time you’ve heard “Creating Hate”, you’re gonna be creating some pretty goddamn awful noises in the toilet yourself. The whipcrack d-beats are back and with a snare that rings like stabs of light in the morning after, the blasts do more damage than mixing whisky and wine. In this rare moment of sober clarity, the fun factor of this debut release is all too clear. The music is still savage and the decibels are in numbers attributed to rapid hearing loss, but the smiles on the faces of the band are easy to imagine. There’s nothing wrong with getting shit canned with your friends and playing riffs. When you can condense these inebriation sessions into short, sweet tracks that lift the spirits of crust, death and grind freaks then the job is indeed a good’un. More HM-2 and blastbeats please bartender!
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At this point of the article, I’m itching at my own skin for a beer. Wouldn’t even need to be a nice one, fuck it wouldn’t even need to be cold. I’ll just make do with the remaining minutes of Feral Chaos’ rabid brand of belligerence – supermarket brand vodka, chugged straight outta the bottle from this point on. Fifteen minutes of uncompromising, Scandinavian grind is exactly what the sober Matt needed this week. Hell, I need this kind of fix every day but it’s much more thirst quenching when the music is so fresh and vibrant. Feral Chaos are now my favourite thing to come out of Helsinki. When the bass tone leaves you with the sting of vomit on the back your throat and the riffs have your dropping a wet greaser out of your collapsed rectum, they might just be your favourite too.