Review Summary: Infrastructure: it goes to 11... again.
is a difficult album to analyze: not because there’s much more depth than the ire and fury that emits from one of the angriest (even by hardcore’s standards) albums to grace the scene in a fair amount of time, but rather because of the band’s discography. It causes a conundrum. Infrastructure
is more of the same; perhaps even more pissed, faster, and angrier in particular spots than their past work, but more of the same nonetheless. Chances are, fans of Bearing & Distance
know what to expect by this point. There’s the chaotic guitars, engaging songwriting, equally ferocious percussion, and a rabid, man-eating (I can only assume so) vocalist bent on delineating further his views on the economy or ecosystem sustainability AS LOUD AS HE FUCKING CAN
(for accuracies sake, I would have written this entire review in caps, but that would have been rather unpleasant). Ghostlimb have enjoyed success playing hardcore in the ridiculously pissed-off style of Dangers and His Hero Is Gone, complete with social commentary, and Infrastructure
is no different.
Problem is, it’s no different. Even the best of formulas deserve a little tweaking now and then, especially when the band at hand is as obviously talented and intelligent as Ghostlimb. Take the songwriting for instance-- though short-fused at one to two minutes long, each track is a firecracker on the verge of exploding, and the band’s timing is impeccable. The subsequent rises and falls sound perfectly deliberate to induce the maximum amount of energy... a craft most obvious on tracks like “Unending Ache,” “Extreme Duress,” and “Concrete.” While there’s definitely a sense of uniformity throughout, a few standouts highlight Ghostlimb’s ability to emphasize their ire through the simmering build-ups and succeeding explosions. Closer “Plastic Surgery” slows down the tempo for the finale and pushes the vocalist to the forefront, but the track feels tacked-on rather than an organic piece of the structure. The 25-minute album is just the right length though, as any more chaotic catharsis would have been exhausting. So, while Ghostlimb’s Infrastructure
is an excellent addition to the heavier side of 2011’s repertoire, I feel myself asking why the band, who is obviously talented, couldn’t have afforded a few more exciting ingredients to add to the hardcore stew. With its small scope and utter ferocity, Ghostlimb’s Infrastructure
can be hailed as nothing but another success from the consistent group, but their third LP also gives off the aura that they’re not quite playing to their potential.