Review Summary: Appetite for self-destruction.
When this album was being made, Simon Brody pointed out about how rushed and stressful Rock and Roll Killing Machine
was to make. Even before it was allowed to destroy a person’s ears, this album was already considered a mistake and now, it still sounds like a mess of genre-mutilation and rage. Oh but what a glorious mess it is though.
Genres maybe mashed together on the album but what could be a weakness becomes one of the music’s greatest strengths thanks to the harmonies of the twin guitarists. The harmonies form a spastic, drop-tuned core to the music and switch between the multitudes of genres and tempos. The guitar work, though, has a firm anchor within the dissonance and catchiness of emo, metalcore and indie rock. It is restraint in excess and it defines this album. From this seething centre, songs build to crescendos before they implode in on themselves in short bursts. Many a time a melodic riff builds and builds before it is demolished under a wave of dual screaming and dissonance. Ideas like this are commonplace in emo but Drowningman’s colourful palette prevents it from ever becoming banal. Indeed the multitudes of influences add a very personal element to the extremities of the music. What is seemingly a rushed pile of junk, is in fact the purest expression of the band’s excesses; a psychopathic, bastard child with nothing but a knife in its hand and two blood-shot eyes targeted at existence itself.