Come To Your House
posted on 4/2006 By:
I’ll make no bones about it: I’m a sucker for this kinda shit. The nineties-era Amphetamine Reptile catalogue was one of my chief gateways into rock’s grimier, uglier realms, and that particular scene’s slide into obscure oblivion is a fucking tragedy as far as I’m concerned. Bands like TODD, therefore, will always bring a smile to my ugly mug; Comes To Your House isn’t purebred noise rock, but it’s a pretty safe bet that if you’re a fan of The Jesus Lizard, Tad, et al, you’ll dig the hell out of TODD.
Chances are that I’ve lost about half of my audience at this point, but I’ll attempt to bring them back. TODD (mostly) play a style of bristling, nasty hardcore that relies on feedback, extremely unfriendly chords, and vocals bellowed through many an effect filter more than on punk roots or metallic overtones to get the message across. This isn’t Converge-styled shit. Unsane, Helmet, embryonic Today Is the Day, and the aforementioned Jesus Lizard are the driving influences here, with Unsane in particular coming out in Craig Clouse’s howled vox and in trudging churners like “Chair Fight” and “The Knife Whisperer.” Unlike many of their predecessors, TODD frequently crank up the tempo to thrashier territory; opener “A Killer Grows Wings” reminds of Botch’s speedier moments with its frantic skronk and unbalanced drumming, while “Don’t Lean on the Shovel” lopes along with a more traditional hardcore punk stride. The songs are saturated with vitriolic fury, but unfortunately TODD has on their second album chosen to saturate some songs almost as heavily with straight-up noise. I understand the band’s desire to experiment and what have you, but songs like “Black Skull,” “Dallas Association of Decency,” “Sheperdess,” and “Crank a Winch?” just come off as Merzbow with a drum kit. Whether this is the desired effect or not is unclear, but the results are virtually unlistenable and really add nothing of interest to the proceedings.
Noise rock is, like grindcore or power metal, a very love-it-or-hate-it style, and I happen to think the world of it. It’s ugly, messy, somewhat simplistic, and given to rambling off on tangents, but it’s a very distinct and nigh-forgotten niche in rock music, and that alone should interest at least some of you. In the end, it breaks down to the following: if you like harsh, grating guitar-driven rock or appreciate any of the aforementioned acts, then TODD is for you. If not, then take a pass. Reviews don’t get much simpler than that.
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