Album Review: Milkmaids-Heavy Sleeper

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Warning: Play this loud, or shut the fuck up about how you’re so into Metal. Go put on ‘Lulu’ by Metallica, and cry yourself to sleep. If you’ve ever found yourself saying, ‘I don’t know, I think ABBA were a better 70’s band than Motorhead’, then first of all, who the fuck are you, and secondly, this album is not for you.

Alright, so the get to boring shit out of the way so I can get stuck into how fucking great this record is. Milkmaids are from Sydney, they play something like if The Melvins were fucking He-Man’s biceps (aka just a huge fucking sludge metal sound) and not much else is known about them. In that regard, Milkmaids are like the Batman of Sydney’s underground scene: mysterious, covered in black shit and more frightening  than a a blowjob from Jaws.

Literally, ‘Heavy Sleeper’ is one of the finest heavy records I’ve heard all year, and I’ve been listening to Converge and Kvlertak like those bands are about to be wiped from the Earth’s memory. Of course, this seems like a weird statement to make in lieu of all the fantastically bombastic releases the world has unleashed upon our timid minds. Deafheaven? A new one from Black Sabbath? ‘Pools’ from locals Zeahorse? Surely, this can’t top them all? But like the last 10 minutes of every sports movie ever, Milkmaids come in at the final moment, pumped full of steroids and juicing to tear off the opposing teams ligaments, to win the game.

‘Monolith’ is the first taste in the record that shows what kind of onslaught the listener is in for. Although it is the second track, and the opener did a fine job of introducing the concept of Milkmaids, it is ‘Monolith’ that carries the torch of gargantuan riffs and a devilish good time. Unlike the aforementioned Zeahorse, (who I’ll admit have the tied first best Australian heavy release of 2013), Milkmaids show they do like to get a little loose on the classic metal side of things instead of experimentingand finding failures. Atom-splitting shredding is introduced are whilst the thickets slabs of meaty bass riffs this side of Sabbath continue to pound away at the mind with unrelenting fervour.

This sort of unhinged badassery that makes you want to start a motorcycle club called ‘The Bad MotherFuckers’ continues throughout the record with unapologetic exuberance. Seriously, listening to songs like ‘Forgot to Think’ and ‘Up In Smoke’ will make you want to hijack a red Corvette, and rip across the middle of nowhere with a Cancer Bats record thrashing and Lemmy Kilmister actually throwing up into your ear, hair mole scratching your eyelids and all. And shorter tracks like ‘Garden’ and ‘Caveman’, well, if you thought those were let-ups on the onslaught, think again as its like a combination of QOTSA’s first record being given a re-work by Rob Zombie and chewed up by the finest fiends of hell.

Although one can go on and on about the vicious delectableness of ‘Heavy Sleeper’, the gargling concoction of bottomed out stoner rock with blacker-than-black bubbling sludge gives Milkmaids the advantage of satisfying the listener within the first few minutes of the record. Now, the ability to continue and maintain such a bastian of hellish and delightful sounds for nearly 40 minutes…that’s a feat that one can only look at with slack-jawed admiration. Final bit of advice: listen to this record. Fucking. Loud.

You can grab Milkmaids record for $8 off their Bandcamp here. The only reason you wouldn’t do this is if you like Fleet Foxes, in which case, how the fuck did you make it to the end of this article? Finally, Milkmaids are playing their final show of 2013 at The Square. GO TO IT! Unless you’re not the sort of person into having their mind blown. In which case, fuck you.

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Album Review: Zeahorse-Pools

artworks-000058413166-or9bxs-t500x500If you’ve ever been one to go for music that is badass and huge and sounds like a New Zealand rugby player is bellowing in your ear, then you really can’t go past Zeahorse. They’re a band that crawl with disturbed beauty, prowling on the weak-minded and challenging the strong-willed, making music to beat the shit out of your preconceptions. Indeed, Zeahorse could probably change your entire world view. That’s how brutal and honest their music is-it will physically and emotionally change you. Personally, I started listening to Zeahorse a small, reclusive ginger, and emerged a glamourous, blonde hunk. Zeahorse has done wonders for my self-esteem!

For the most part of ‘Pools’, Zeahorse lay down thick slabs of dirty feedback. Remember that part in Breaking Bad where Walter rescues Jesse from the crack den? Yeah, Zeahorse are playing on that level of dirtiness. But that is definitely not a bad thing, in fact it works in their favour. It lets you indulge in the grime and scum you’ve always wanted, albeit in an audio format. Isn’t music fun?

Opener ‘Career’ is a slow, disturbing introduction to the warped world of Zeahorse, but the madness comes to fruition on album highlight ‘Pool’. The drawn out guitar works its way through your brain like mercury, slowly choking you, but at the same time giving a sense of relief you haven’t felt since you found the holy grail of a clean public toilet. But the greatest moment for that track is when things go all-out abomination, with banshee sounds erupting to fucking great effect, blasting the listener with a wave of orgasmic post-rock glory.

Remember, ‘Pool’ is only the second track on the record. There is still plenty more shit to go down. Take ‘Onion’ for example, a ADHD ridden junkie of a track, jumping all around with a manic look in its eyes, Charlie Manson on murder juice. ‘Onion’ switches from slow, menacing Tool-like blows of bass and whispers to anarchic screams of fury. And ‘Tugboat’ re-defines the term ‘with gusto’, taking that twattish phrase and inserting an adrenaline rush that would make Uma Thurman’s character in Pulp Fiction say ‘Woah, slow the fuck down’.

‘Pools’ unleashes the sort of hellish sounds one would expect from a youthful Birthday Party crossed with The Jesus Lizard, smothered in a thick coat of Baroness. The unruly, fuck you nature of their lyrics and vocals, reinforced with the dry, heaving bass lines that compress the tracks into iron-clad forces to be reckoned with, and the drone-rock guitar buzz that yawns in every track like the gates of hell opening…I mean, has this combination of things even been tried before? We’re talking about a bonafide original fucking band here that will not only fuck with your mind, but do it with an energy that you’ve never heard before. As far as this debut goes, Zeahorse can be filed next to great bands of the heavier side of things, right next to Cancer Bats and Boris. ‘Pools’ is fucking deadly.

‘Pools’ is already out on HUB the Label, through Inertia. You should buy it if you want to get that pesky EDM shit permanently out of your brain (that makes me a hypocrite, I know, get over it). Zeahorse will be playing their launch at Club 77 next Friday, which is the 1st of November. No Art and Narrow Lands, two bands that give the term ‘capable’ a new definition, will be playing support. Zeahorse are an absolutely mental live act, and once seen, you’ll have a whole new appreciation for their tunes. Tickets are $10, which means you have no reason to go, unless Cthulhu breaks loose.

Album Review: Bone-For Want of Feeling

ImageImagine you’re in your local record store. On your right side, there is the brand spanking new Selena Gomez album, selling for a measly $19.99. It’s got some ripper tracks on there, your sure of it. I mean, she’s bangin’ the Biebz, what could go wrong? When you’ve seen a nutsack swimming with that much talent, the results can only be stellar. But on your left, there’s something by a band called Bone. It looks pretty minimalistic, and there’s definitely no pretty colours. In fact, it looks downright morbid, with the chessboard, and killing contraption that seems to have mutilated the shit out of someone. ‘For Want of Feeling’? Of course I want feeling! You reach your hand towards the new Selena Gomez album (obviously). Then you awake from your nightmare! Thank god, shit could’ve gotten fucked up in a second (sorry Portia).

In traditionally forward thinking style, the Sydney label tenzenmen were the ones to release this abrasive debut LP. It kicks and huffs like a wild eyed horse, the mania swarming like hellfire in it’s eyes. Every track on here is a searing portrait, a bastion of hellish sounds that contort and twist into something Pinhead from Hellraiser would probably be pretty content to jam to. Stoic and upright, the noise is one of brutal punk, but slowed down to devilish and sinister levels. It’s like what shoul have happened for Black Flag after ‘Slip It In’.

‘For Want of Feeling’ caresses a heavy bass line, duelling squallish guitar with pounding drums that march haphazardly with forebodingly militaristic strength. The album becomes increasingly dark as it progresses, and loses none of it’s genuine dramatic tension, a laudable effort within itself. The storming energy is consistent with every track, and Bone manage to push each note and scream to it’s mind-numbing length. If Maynard James Keenan went all incognito and decided to create a new band from the depths of Melbourne, I wouldn’t be surprised if Bone were that band. Of course, they aren’t the brain child of ‘A Perfect Rambler’ Keenan, as Bone get a lot more to the point and are able to smash their song into smithereens and emerge like the gnashing titans they are, rather than prolong things into redundancy as Tool are apt to do.

Alarm bells ringing in their guitars and bass, the longer songs like ‘Bath Time’, ‘See the Boy’ and ‘Pedestal’ are the standouts on ‘For Want of a Feeling’. It’s not that the other tracks are shit or anything, far from it. It’s just with that extra minute or so, Bone really develop the gruel and growl to another beast entirely. It’s crazy shit to listen to, and no doubt witness. Fuck this band just sound better and better the more I listen to them.

So, to reiterate the point I was making at the beginning of this review, if the thought of purchasing the new Selena Gomez album was crossing your mind….just think for a second. Instead of contributing to the downfall of mankind, support some of the best droning punk this side of the galaxy. I’m sure E.T’s mates are in a pretty cool crust-punk band and all that, but until they get their shit together and put out a demo, the honours go to Bone, and their drool embraced ‘For Want of Feeling’.

You can stream two of the albums stellar tracks, ‘See the Boy’ and ‘Pedestal’ from their Bandcamp, but I gotta warn you, it’s not for the faint of heart.

Video: God Damn-Heavy Money

And this week’s most heartwarmingly gruesome clip goes to….God Damn’s ‘Heavy Money’. It’s like an artsy version of Harry Brown (the Michael Caine movie where he beats the fuck out of everyone) cut down to a couple minutes and soundtracked to some crushingly beautiful heavy music. Honestly, the falling from grace vibe that this song puts out s overwhelming and honest, which is really rare in a song that maintains the roughness of ‘Heavy Money’. Also, a guy’s head explodes, which is awesome.