Genghis Tron
Board Up the House


3.5
great

Review

by Tyler Munro EMERITUS
February 22nd, 2008 | 165 replies | 21,570 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Imagine if Dead Mountain Mouth was actually worth listening to.

Genghis Tron's debut EP, Cloak of Love, was more or less an absolute novelty. I don't think anyone would be willing to argue otherwise. It was, however, an absolute blast; varying between grind and dance music, it got people grooving just to shock them with an abrupt blast of chaotic grind. Cloak of Love was a novelty and better for it.

Before making their debut LP, what we now know as Dead Mountain Mouth, Genghis Tron seemingly figured this out. They realized they were perhaps falling into a novel niche, a gimmick that was essentially played out after five songs. Their full length was thus pivotal, it had to reinforce whether they, as a band, were going to remain a more entertaining but equally gimmicky An Albatross or if they were going to take what they had and shape it. Though it was initially a let down, Genghis Tron thankfully went with the latter. They probably realized, much like many of us have, that they used up most of their "fun" ideas on the EP.

Both Cloak of Love and Dead Mountain Mouth did what was necessary. The EP gave the band some notoriety, and helped establish a fanbase, while the full-length solidified that they were capable of more than gimmicky contrasts. Sure, Dead Mountain Mouth was in many ways a disappointment, but in hindsight, it was a letdown not because of the diminished amount of fun, but because it was wholly underwhelming. Thankfully Dead Mountain Mouth was just the nail in the wall; Board up the House is the finished product.

Board up the House begins with a track of the same name, counting with an almost haunting pseudo-dance loop, a darker slant on what you would have heard on the EP. The song finally kicks in, and it's all over the place, something that continues throughout and is actually more of a positive than it may seem. The title track also introduces listeners to the newest piece of the puzzle: the band's newfound melody. Though it's not to say they were without melody on past releases, Genghis Tron has found a way to incorporate clean vocals into their relatively chaotic sound, something "Board up the House" does immediately, varying between shriek accompanied blasts and clean, synth-subdued melodic passages.

While the band has found a way to incorporate clean vocals into the mix, it's more of a side step from chaos than an actual step back. "City on a Hill", for example, is absolutely relentless with its shape-shifting. It's also the only track with any semblance of what the band was doing just three years ago, as it's laced with a dance-y transition or two.

Throughout the album, there seems to one persistent synth loop that re-enters just when you start to forget about it. I wouldn't say it's a leitmotif so much as a thread that stretches front to back, but I will say that it hints at just how controlled the band has become just three years after their absolute lack of cohesion and order garnered them a fanbase.

Things have taken a darker, more mature (I guess) turn on Board up the House and Kurt Ballou's presence is felt more than ever, noted in the fact that at times chunks of certain tracks will sound scarily familiar, almost like someone's got their copy of Jane Doe spinning in the background. Beyond that, there are very few pressing negatives to be found. The brief instances of post-suffix atmospherics are at times hit or miss, or in the case of "Relief", the 10 minute track that's 9 and a half minutes too long, absolutely pointless. At times, both the harsh and clean vocals leave a lot to desired, but they're rarely irksome and usually adequate. The only other fault I find is just as easily one of the album's stronger aspects: it hits its stride early and rides it, alongside that aforementioned persistent synth, right until the end.

Put in perspective, Board up the House is a solid album. It downplays their grind roots at parts, but allows their chaotic past to re-enter when applicable (Colony Collapse, City on a Hill, The Feast). Most importantly, it's everything Dead Mountain Mouth should have been: cohesive, consistent and entertaining. Add in the occasional body-groovin' loop or two and you've really got Genghis Tron at their best. Genghis Tron have moved beyond the gimmick, and for those who still yearn for some unadulterated fun, Cloak of Love does still exist. This album does not erase the past, it builds on it, and barring an obvious house metaphor, that's important to remember.



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user ratings (439)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
Maximilian Harkness (3)
Disco-inspired Grindcore fun!...

gasmaskman (3.5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Tyler
Emeritus
February 22nd 2008



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I realize this lacks flow. I realize I probably talk about the EP too much. I also realize I don't care. Wanted to get this out there so we'd have it on here.
Album is between a 3 and a 3.5. It isn't all too memorable and it kind of runs together but it's pretty good while you're listening to.

plane
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2008



6073 Comments


Pretty much completely agree with the final paragraph.

gasmaskman
February 22nd 2008



1006 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I agree that it isn't very memorable.This Message Edited On 02.22.08

mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2008



17911 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeh

IsItLuck?
Emeritus
February 22nd 2008



4925 Comments


sup soundoff

HighandDriving
February 22nd 2008



3232 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review, I'm really enjoying this record.

Tyler
Emeritus
February 22nd 2008



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5


Remember when Dead Mountain Mouth came out and it was possibly one of the greatest creations of Genghis Tron ever? I remember, I also remember the creativity within the band. The band consisted of a creative sound that wasn't really heard of before including music being created with Guitar, Drum Machine, Synth, and Keyboards.
Then... About a month ago I was browsing the internet and I decided to view Genghis Trons MySpace page. Little did I know they were coming out with a new Cd. So I decided to pirate that s*it. When I got that Cd I noticed the change from there previous Cds. This Cd had to be possibly one of the worst Cd's I've heard in a long long time.
The Cd was a cross between Creed, Sky Eats Airplane, And The Postal Service. The amazing vocal ability that was in Dead Mountain Mouth had completely disappeared. The Synth was completely irritating due to the fact that half of the Cd is just complete beats and Drum beats and other Electronic features. As I listened to this Cd more I noticed that enjoyed one song on the Cd and it turned out being not even that good of a song towards the end. I also started to notice that majority of the songs on the Cd are just one long track split into different tracks. The "yelling" or "shouting" as you could call it now is beyond horrible compared to the old Vocals.
The band has seemed to turn mainstream over the year while making Board Up The House. The band has turned more to the side that most bands turn to once they start to get bigger, and bigger... Really bad. I'm ashamed to say that the Genghis Tron that I used to know has died within me and within all of us. If you start to notice the change from there old Cd's to the new one you will start to notice the respect you have for the creativity that they used to have before mainstream had took over there music. To sum this all up Genghis Tron has not stayed true the scene and has died to the scene and died to me.

HighandDriving
February 22nd 2008



3232 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ya I saw that, absolutely terrible.

"The Cd was a cross between Creed, Sky Eats Airplane, And The Postal Service."

That's my favourite part lol.

whatduffhuck7
February 22nd 2008



163 Comments


good review, and a good album. definitely more structure on these songs than earlier

Metalikane
February 22nd 2008



851 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm really enjoying this CD. I agree Relief is unnecessarily long, but other than that I have no qualms. I'm anxious,as fuck, to see them live. With Converge, no less.

jrowa001
February 22nd 2008



8749 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

great review. i have only listened to a few songs and i liked them. ill rate this when i listen to the whole thing a few times

KritikalMotion
February 23rd 2008



2259 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5



I really enjoy this album, perhaps should of given it a 4 though as Cloak of Love is still there best works.This Message Edited On 02.23.08

Tyler
Emeritus
February 23rd 2008



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Cloak of Love is also just under 13 minutes long.

Willie
Moderator
February 23rd 2008



15774 Comments


This album and their debut EP have caught my attention... to Myspace...

Digging: Teramaze - Esoteric Symbolism

ddrfreak62
February 23rd 2008



106 Comments


Well i have to disagree with the dead mountain mouth part. I thought that album was awesome.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
February 23rd 2008



3995 Comments


Well, you like DDR, so uhhh...

Good to hear that these guys are back to putting out good material.

x28x06x42x12
February 23rd 2008



64 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm gonna have to check this out. I enjoyed Cloak of Love, but never checked out Dead Mountain Mouth.

steveosk8s
February 23rd 2008



135 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i love this album, and i loved dead mountain mouth as well. i disagree with the review and comments about dead mountain mouth, but its well written and conveys your opinion well, props.

keepmypmasxe
February 26th 2008



37 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this album is by far the best album of my 2008! =]

Confessed2005
March 1st 2008



3314 Comments


I need to get some Genghis Tron. What I've heard from them is brilliant.

Why do so many great bands hail from Boston...

?



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