Review Summary: Complex, jagged structures. True visceral art.
Power. Violent. Grind. These three words summarize one of the most intense bands out of Australia. Agents of Abhorrence released “Earth.Water. Sun.” in 2008 and it went largely unnoticed compared to some of the more traditional grind releases. Clocking in at a little over 9 minutes total, this album will take you by storm. Influenced by the new school of power violence ( Iron Lung and the like), expect a blunt nasty onslaught. The vocals vary between a charred shriek and a guttural roar. “Salt and earth! Salt and Fvcking earth!” vocalist Grant John frantically howls over the onslaught of dissonant riffage and blasting drums. The trio coexists within the chaos wonderfully and the complex, jagged structures created are true visceral art.
“The whole planet is uprooted” the voice wails with Armageddon behind it. The concept behind this album seems to be an apocalyptic look at mortality and nature. The beautiful photograph of the flower on the cover brings to mind the cycle of life that all things are bound by. Concepts aside, this album is a real stand out in the genre. The main complaint would be it’s length but this is not an uncommon trait within the genre. The first track is a short ambient intro that could be more interesting but it’s not exactly long enough to care about. It almost lulls you into a false sense of security before blasting you with piss, I mean “Salt and Earth”. This song is one of the stand outs on the album and will be embedded in your skull in a few plays. It seems to hearken back to Jane Doe at times. Repetition isn’t something to worry about with such a short album, but it’s still awesome how each song really stands out.
“Love Song” is probably another competitor for best track. The intro seems like it could be a speed up Swans riff and that slower paced heaviness with the guitar carries through the entire track while the drums are wailed on. “Puppet Fvck” ravages and casts down the opposition. The lines that accompany the track send a common message but are still potent as hell. “You... seep into the concrete and spread like a disease / Lobotomized, on automation, a puppet, on your knees”. The uncompromising harshness and the unique structures explored in each, short, violent track basically cover new ground in the genre. There are only a few bands that blur these boundaries so well. Even though it’s a bit on the short side, this album stands among the best in recent grind. What the album lacks in length it more than makes up for with innovation.