Release DetailsLABEL Robotic Empire Records
RELEASED ON 2/2/2006
Magrudergrind / Shitstorm
posted on 3/2006 By:
After Sessions reviewed that BCT album The Life and Times of Steven Character, I was thankful that he did his part, however minimal, to steer me towards the grind subgenre. I’ve always had an affinity for it. Luckily, this Split from Magrudergrind and Shitstorm is a tasty 22-minute excursion, though neither band is overwhelmingly original or striking. But, they are both likeable for several different reasons. I suppose it’d be easiest to break this disc in two, and review each half, so that’s what I’m going to do. By the way, my apologies if I seem a little out of it; I’m hopped up on antibiotics, which make me nervous, dizzy, and a little paranoid, though I’m not hallucinating. Therefore, there are no “goddamn bats” to speak of. All right, lets go:
I chopped down that bush, so there’s no way I can beat around it. Thus, Magrudergrind are the better of the two mobs. The self-proclaiming “powerviolence grindcore” enthusiasts have some cool things to present on their side of the Split. Naturally the songs are as concise as can be, but are peppered with strained screams, frenetic musicianship, and the occasional all-out groove. I’m not a fan of the cameo vocals (mid-pitch bellowing, gang shouting, etc.), in spite of the infrequent appearances. Calling the first ten tracks their own, Magrudergrind’s form of grind runs parallel to that of Pig Destroyer, Watchmaker, and Wojczech, though each group mentioned are doing something completely different, evidenced by a plethora of nuances. However – as much as I like what I hear – I’ve got a hunch that their 62-track compendium, Sixty Two Trax of Thrash (“thrash/crossover influence”), is the best place to start and end with this Maryland-based entity. The latter houses most of their split releases – sans this one – and is a definitive collection.
The good-but-not-great Shitstorm – sharing members with Torche – close Split with their old-school grind renditions, which conjure pioneers such as Napalm Death as well as a group or two from Selfmadegod Records. Overall, their half has some crushing moments, but is less memorable than what their peers put forth. As you might infer, the grind formula is being observed here and Shitstorm fling their material with as much velocity as they can muster. All in all, their talent is apparent, as is their ability to structure songs of this nature. However, with Magrudergrind being superior, these guys seemingly lack the charisma to upstage their fellow Americans. Still, I couldn’t pinpoint any major mistakes, and I did enjoy both sides of this 24-song outing.
Oh, soundclips? You bet! On this outing, however, they’re kept to a minimum. There's no bass either. I went ahead and averaged the scores, since albums are in such stiff competition for your hard-earned cash. While a solid offering from a couple of promising grinders, Split isn’t nearly essential. Sixty Two Trax of Thrash looks more attractive to me and I’d probably go with that one, but only when the room stops spinning will I give that a listen.
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