It’s reassuring to know that a slew of fans of extreme music takes as much comfort in discord and dissonance as I. Call it a devolution of taste if you will, but the more terrifying and unnatural the sounds coming out of my speakers, the more I feel. Eventually, everything will sound like Aphex Twin having an on-stage meltdown, but until then we have Ion Dissonance, Frontierer, Arms, and the rest of the nightmare noisecore mob. While all leaning on different aspects of math metal, common bonds see these bands grouped together in just about every relevant online community. Well, here’s three more I’m lumping in with them. Hopefully, someone with the same proclivity for screeching guitars and washing-machine-kicked-down-the-stairs grooves will be stoked, if not, yeah it’s a whole lot of noise.
Gosh, Goshen Are Great
First things first. If you check this next band out and don’t dig them, the very least you have to acknowledge is how on the button the Bandcamp tags are. The screamo, grind, and beatdown split personality disorder that Goshen weaponise melts the synapses connecting math and noise and hardcore with just a rare misfire or two. Their self-titled debut is choppy and rough around the edges but has a heart made of pure menace, threatening to poison the air with sounds unfit for regular human consumption at every step. It’s the kid in class who you knew, from your first encounter with them, was the personification of every warning sign your parents drilled into your young mind. You went and poked a dead body with them anyway because of course, you did. It was terrifying and exhilarating and a bit dirty. Just like this.
I love Dillinger and I love Pig Destroyer. This isn’t really a combination of the two, but throw all the bands from anything I’ve ever written into a twisted Venn diagram and Goshen’s debut lands somewhere near their crossover. The detuned guitars, whammy wails and spitfire riff shifts are the violent tools of a band with as fine appreciation of chaos as I’ve ever come across; opener “G.A.B.” is a great litmus test for whether or not you’ll find satisfaction through this particular sonic salvo. Shorter, punky numbers and zero respite – save for some white noise between individual assaults – allow Goshen the complete freedom of letting their instruments and words do literally all of the talking. No gimmicks, no pastiche, no clean edges. Some of the material feels loose and unbalanced but that’s maybe where the “fakemath” tag makes sense. It doesn’t have to be precise all the time, sometimes it’s infinitely more interesting to let the shit hit the fan. Listen to “Cave” and picture me also listening to it, just having a great time really.
That’s A Real SHAME
Force an AI to listen to the ole dial-up Internet tone looped for a thousand hours and ask it to write a violent mathcore record. You might get something similar to SHAME‘s recently released Failure To Understand The Human Condition. Discordance Axis with white belts and every line of The Matrix memorised – that’s the daft and easy way of describing their sound. The EP is shot through with panic breakdowns and crisp, creepy samples from fuck knows where, the band relishing in the recently replenished xtechxgrindxmathx scene and embracing a fondness for beatdown. “Despite Goodwill, Human Intimacy Cannot Occur Without Substantial Mutual Harm” reads like an instruction manual for the kinds of crowds fit for bleak, necessary bludgeonings like this. There might be bands doing something similar you prefer more but I bet you these guys would bully yours into giving up your lunch money.
It’s easy to understand the band’s Failure To Understand The Human Condition. Everything’s fucked. Look left, swipe right, look right, order food, look up from your phone – the world’s ending again on the news. The final broadcasts of world news will need a fitting soundtrack, one that translates through every arm of the digital world. SHAME would be my pick. As on-the-nose as Black Mirror is for TV, at it’s best it teases us with nightmares of future co-existence of humans and technology. This record isn’t anything like as pretentious as that, but it’s fully capable of eliciting the same excited apprehension that great sci-fi does. And the riffs man, don’t dare forget about the riffs.
Some Remorse, Some Guilt
I don’t know much about Indiana except that one of my favourite Heavy Bloggers now resides there (hey Ryan!) and there’s a relatively new group playing dark, dingy mathcore from out of the state. The two tracks on Remorse‘s debut demo recordings are thick, doomy, and chaotic – more deliberately cumbersome than Goshen and a touch more dissonant than SHAME. I can’t recall ever including demo recordings in any of the features I write here, but the six minutes of music available from this band are incredibly enjoyable and this demo bodes very well for the future of a band that very few are currently following.
“GUILT.” opens with a pleasing and familiar shrill guitar sound and you don’t need a degree in Metalcore History to recognise the thumping, off-kilter grooves that scream Disembodied just as loudly as Vein seem to be shouting about the Slipknot self-titled. It’s a great, brief track that opens up into “The End”. Hopefully, this isn’t to be taken literally as the track sees Remorse coming into their destructive swagger with a head-bobbing aplomb. With cymbals smashing on the off-beat, the verses swing manically from house lights/any fixture in touching distance, quickly turning into a corridor of back-and-forth spoken and screamed words. All tied up with a brown note breakdown absolutely rammed full of discord and disgust. Good stuff. More soon please.