Cult Leader
Useless Animal


3.5
great

Review

by Mort. CONTRIBUTOR (55 Reviews)
June 18th, 2015 | 39 replies


Release Date: 06/16/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Cult Leader attempt to cast off the shadow of their previous incarnation, and just fall short of the mark.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from Useless Animal seeming as it’s only Cult Leader’s second release, following on from 2014's slightly underwhelming Nothing for Us Here, which failed to cast off the shadow of the band's past incarnation “Gaza” in both style and sound. To an extent the same failing is true here, as tracks “Useless Animal” and “Gutter Gods” are both well inside Cult Leaders comfort zone, possessing the same violent, lurching grindcore feel that many of the tracks on the previous EP (and on Gaza’s records) dealt in. Both tracks fly by in under 2 minutes, a cacophony of blastbeats, monotonous screaming and chaotic riffing that isnt by any means bad, but is definitely unimaginative.

The redeeming factor of the EP is the closer, a cover of “You Are Not My Blood” by Mark Kozelek & Desertshore. Just as “Driftwood” was the perfect slow-burning sludge piece to close out Cult Leader’s previous effort, “You Are Not My Blood” is the standout track of the EP, providing a sharp and well needed contrast to Cult Leader's self-indulgent chaos. Slow and winding, it moves at sombre pace from beginning to end, carried along by a repeating guitar melody and vocalist Anthony Lucero’s resigned performance. Harsh vocals are absent from the track with Lucero replacing his grating roars with muttered, bitter intonations. Technically unimpressive in all ways, “You Are Not My Blood” is a dirge, a song built on one repeating riff that doesn’t lead anywhere and has nothing to prove. It’s indicative of Cult Leader's potential to move away from their roots and stop making the same music, and hopefully indicative of the quality of their upcoming LP, even if it is just a cover.



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user ratings (58)
Chart.
3.2
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
June 18th 2015


14004 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

short review for a short ep, feedback would be appreciated



https://cultleadermusic.bandcamp.com/album/useless-animal

Digging: Ariana Grande - Sweetener

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
June 18th 2015


17666 Comments


good

Digging: Animal Collective - Tangerine Reef

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
June 18th 2015


14004 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

badbadnotgood

Grand
June 18th 2015


79 Comments


I shall 'pos' this review good fellow.

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
June 18th 2015


14004 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

thanks bruh

Grand
June 18th 2015


79 Comments


Oh dear fellow...no need to thank me.

cvlts
June 18th 2015


9475 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thought the A-side of this destroys anything that was on NFUH. Appreciated the experimentation but didn't really care for the Kozelek cover.

DrJohn
June 18th 2015


1041 Comments


Cool review, it reads closer to a 3 imho but i enjoyed it nonetheless... posd

wacknizzle
June 18th 2015


14521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Good review, pos'd. Now just give me the new LP!

Digging: Thou - Rhea Sylvia

SomeGuyDude
June 18th 2015


346 Comments


"following up from 2014's slightly underwhelming “Nothing for Us Here” which failed to cast off the shadow of the bands past incarnation “Gaza”, in both style and sound. "

1) Nothing For Us Here was fucking amazing, that's just my opinion but still, LOL.

2) The reason Cult Leader sounds like Gaza is that it's literally the same band with a new vocalist, they only "broke up" because of the massive drama surrounding Jon. It's not SUPPOSED to be a new band. It's Gaza reincarnated.

I don't really disagree with the score, just that irked me. This a short EP with a pair of solid tracks and then that long cover which, while good, doesn't do much for me. Sure, it's well done, but it's not really what I listen to CL for. Hopefully they don't swerve that way too hard in the full length.

wacknizzle
June 18th 2015


14521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Agreed, Nothing For Us Here was really dope for only being like 12 minutes long

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
June 18th 2015


14004 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I understand and agree with your points to an extent but like you said you think Nothing For Us Here was amazing, i just think it was good.



And yeah obviousoly a band made out of members off a previous band are going to share similarities but i think Cult Leader just need to move away from that sound because theyve done it to death. And imo their two best songs are Driftwood and You Are Not My Blood, which are the songs of theirs that stray away from their base sound the most.

SomeGuyDude
June 18th 2015


346 Comments


But it's not "made out of the members of a previous band" is my point. They fired the lead singer and got a new one, then used a new name to distance themselves from the stigma the other one had thanks to the accusations and all that.

It might have to do with your opinion of Gaza to begin with. I admit I'm a straight up fanboy, I have the bird from HINCB tattooed across my upper back, and when Cult Leader came out and was a continuation of Gaza I could not have been happier. If they went away from that sound I'd have been pretty pissed haha. Besides, Gaza only had three albums and the first two were really different.

Again, I guess it depends on what you thought of Gaza. If you just thought they were all right, then I can understand wishing Cult Leader drifted from the sound. I can't think of anyone else that sounds like them, so having that unique sound retained is excellent to me. It's like not Parkin's new band Bird Eater which ended up being more standard stompy death metal.

wacknizzle
June 18th 2015


14521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

As long as they continue writing good heavy tunes i dun care if they still sound like Gaza. Gaza was dope

cvlts
June 18th 2015


9475 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's not too much to ask a band to differentiate themselves from their previous incarnation... what would be the point of starting all over again if that weren't the case?



And if the reviewer thought they didn't do that initially then it's okay to simply disagree.



Personally, I thought Cult Leader did a fine job differentiating themselves... it just wasn't all that impressive.

ConcubinaryCode
June 18th 2015


4356 Comments


I've got to get my hands on this. Nice review man.

DoofusWainwright
June 19th 2015


20004 Comments


Good review Mort, will check that Kozelek cover

Nikkolae
June 29th 2015


5374 Comments


Gaza Lives

Digging: Skycamefalling - 10.21

Mort.
Contributing Reviewer
July 26th 2015


14004 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

sweet, my first featured review.

Lord(e)Po)))ts
July 26th 2015


39661 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

will check even tho im sure it wont be anywhere as good as any gaza



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