The cover for Witness The ***ness
looks like it was haphazardly rustled up in a few minutes, which is fair enough considering it’s for a compilation self-described as ***. Although I do think Down I Go were being a bit hard on themselves, as its obvious these tracks are meant to be taken as a bit of fun; sharing the shorter length and overtly ridiculous nature of their early output. Of the eight songs here three are demos from Tyrants
, the other five being random snapshots from different eras in Down I Go’s career. There’s the punchy exuberance of “Dionysus” (“I am the god of wine!”), the falsetto parody of “King Herod The Great” and the strangely festive duo of “Santasauras” and “I Am Reindeer”, serving as useful reminders that no topic is off limits to Down I Go’s absurd brand of hardcore. As usual Pete Fraser lays down his eclectic vocals, shouting, squealing and gibbering his way through bite-sized morsels of the bands inane ***-abouts. They truly are ***-abouts too, with the instrumentation straying more towards the simpler side than anything compositionally complex. They’re still impressively catchy though, with a lot of interesting and predictably silly ideas crammed into one minute exercises. This brevity does have the downfall of leaving me yearning for more, but that’s a small price to pay to experience more from a band that’s one of a kind.