Release DetailsLABEL Selfmadegod Records
RELEASED ON 9/11/2004
Seeds of Cruelty
posted on 12/2004 By:
Let me just let this sink in; Toxic. Bonkers.
Get that? With such a moniker you’d expect this Polish outfit to deliver humor tinged grindcore, with lots of squirty samples, but nay dear reader, Toxic Bonkers are actually a rather entertaining thrash come grindcore outfit that resemble early Sepultura mixed with Napalm Death or Both Thrower. The self anointed grindcore tag is slightly forced to cash in on other more brutal Eastern European acts, but the grindcore Toxic Bonkers display a far thrashier, old school take on death metal that in 1990, may have been termed grindcore.
With a very burly production, especially the drums, Toxic Bonkers hack and bash their way through 11 simplistically brutal and chunky tunes that make no attempt to dress up their sound in overt technicality or masturbatory histrionics; it’s actually refreshingly rudimentary and groovy. The vocals of Qboot (I know), are the main reason for the Sepultura comparison and his primal, throaty, heavily accented shout is straight from Beneath the Remains, as it compliments the guitar tone and almost tribal feel of the percussive assault of Grela. However, the overall sound isn’t quite as tight as Sepultura, as the band’s material is loosely written and played with a more freeform, punk/grind take on death metal.
Forgoing introductory pleasantries, Toxic Bonkers jump straight into the meaty title track with its massive ending lurch. Toxic Bonkers don’t mince around or make any effort to cover their influences as Qboot roars “I AM WHAT I AM!!” during “Homeless” or decrying world pollution during “Poisoned” in pure Cavalera worship. But the thing that kept leaping out at me was Grela’s stout performance on the drums, giving each of the songs a hulking Major League Baseball player backbone and dominating presence. Although aided by the possibly overdone drum production, the end result is a pounding, migraine inducing sound to each track that’s a bitch to shake. The opening salvo’s of “Don’t Be Afraid” and ‘”Free World” are merciless percussive assaults on your ears, that almost derive any power from the actual song structure.
Not really littered with classic or timeless songs, Seeds of Cruelty is nonetheless full of solid neck breaking, grinding mid tempos that force involuntary head-banging and plenty of air double bass playing sure to deaden your calf muscles. More up-tempo tracks follow a more punk based grindcore lineage as “Weep”, “Liars” and “Can You See” brings to mind Disgust's punkish outbursts. However, I much preferred the lumbering pace of “Wrong Way Direction” or the pure Napalm Death-ism of album closer “Vision”.
This is a pretty stout album that’s surprisingly good despite its intentional simplicity and homage.
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