Saturday, February 19, 2011

Total Fucking Destruction - Hater (2011)

Apparently Im the only resident of the Blog-o-sphere that likes Total Fucking Destruction, so Im making it my mission to convert the haters to the way of peace, love, and Total Fucking Destruction (see what I did there?). In the name of journalistic integrity, I need to confess that TFD's last album, Peace, Love, and Total Fucking Destruction is one of my favorite albums. Ever. (Read my review.) So I approached their latest, Hater, with perhaps unreasonably high expectations. The fact that the shipment got delayed, causing me to wait anxiously by my mailbox like a puppy waiting for its master didnt help in forming more realistic expectations. This may all seem to be leading up to Hater being a huge let down, but the fact is that Hater is good. Really good.

It took a few spins for me to realize that this album and Peace, Love, etc. are two different beasts. Where the content of TFD's last album were more like exercises in musical deconstruction, Hater showcases a more relaxed approach. Sure, the spooked-cat-in-a-small-box drumming is still present, but there is also ample breathing room between blasts. There is a loose, punk feel to the songs that makes the album sound downright fun, instead of, well, psychotic.

The first few tracks get things grinding, and are reminiscent of the TFD we know and love. The first standout track, "Everything You Need and Nothing You Want," plops a fat juicy groove right in the middle, offering a chance to get your neck loosened up before enticing you to "grind for the money/grind for the girls." Now thats a message I can get behind. As always, the guitar shifts effortlessly among grinding riffs, bluesy grooves, and punk bounce. Theres even a damn good solo on "Dudehammer," which also happens to feature the best lyric on the album: "Im not Jesus/You dont know me."

TFD have always put a lot of thought into their vocals, and it pays off every time. The lyrical delivery compliments the underlying musical melody (or lack thereof), and lends each track a unique character. While the actual lyrical content seems pretty abstruse, there are many gems littered about. Hell, the entirety of "Meat Without Feet" is a lyrical gem.

I have always respected TFD's ability to re-interpret their earlier material. Acknowledging and re-inventing the old stuff provides a concrete sense of evolution. Its also just plain fun to see how they can completely change a song, like how "Bio-Satanic Terroristic Attack" went from being an acoustic folk song on Zen to one of the most blistering tracks on Peace, Love, etc. On Hater, the most obvious example is "Human is the Bastard." Originally recorded for This Comp Kills Fascists, this version has been doubled in length, slowed down, and otherwise altered so that it now resembles slow decay, rather than a careening freak-out. "Murdernumber" and "Battle Command in Future War" contain similar reworks of older material.

Hater continues TFD's tradition of growth and experimentation. Its also a hell of a good time. I hesitate to call it party grind, but this is definitely an album that is having a blast (no pun intended), and would like you to join it.

Haters gonna hate

Monday, February 14, 2011

From My Heart To Yours

Happy Valentines Day everyone!

Featuring such songs of devotion as "Fucked With a Knife," and especially "She Was Asking For It," Cannibal Corpse's 1994 outing The Bleeding is the perfect addition to your romantic Valentines Day dinner.

Seal the deal.