Beaten Back To Pure
The Burning South

‘Trailer-core’ was only term I could come up for this hazy Southern slab of fuzzed out, earthy metal. Equal parts sludgy, hazy doom-rock and groovy southern hardcore, BBTP have released an album that comes across as Crowbar and Floodgate meets Eyehategod and Down while in a Jack Daniels and Darvocet induced stupor and simply oozes character from every alcohol soaked pore.

Sweaty, oily and hairy, BBTP are metal rednecks with a mission to simply play a music that mixes the South’s bluesy heritage with a harsher, gritty metal sound, and it works so perfectly I found myself wearing flannel, chewing tobacco and I installed a gun rack in my Honda Civic. The riffs are thicker than swamp water and equally infectious, all laced with Ben’s Whiskey ripened roar and sometimes soulful back porch croon. The mood of the album is a tangible humidity and grime than puts you in the Bayou backwater while wearing spikes and bullet belts, the mix of metal and fuzzed out Southern hostility is superbly rendered and each track is a swarthy, groove laden dirge of incest, stale beer and gator fuckin’ Southern pride.

 Unashamed of their origin, the General Lee aesthetic of the artwork carries over into the material that’s awash with grimy layers of stoner doom but often rife with a heavier, more abrasive manifestation that gives the album some Skoal induced bite. The pacing starts with surprising immediacy as ‘America Vermin’ tumbles from the speakers with a rock ‘n’ roll gait smothered in hotsauce and saliva. But the rest of the album is more of a sonic hangover with a far more drawn out pace and plenty of appropriately Southern bridges and acoustic interludes that enforces the heaving Swampish atmosphere. ‘Smothered in Sundress’ starts of with a surprisingly articulate intro before the song explodes with a crushing groove and metal square dance face-off that’s only missing a fiddle and some teeth to make it true hick-core. ‘Hell Goes Thru hanging Dog’ highlights Bens almost Jan De Koeyer-like (Gorefest-circa Erase) growl along with his suitably bluesy drone that could be from any Down album.

Now fear not, The Burning South isn’t all just murky, pot hazed doom, as there are some Crowbar like moments of sheer oppressive weight as heard on ‘One Shovel and a Place to Die’ and its gargantuan main riff. The slight injections of acoustic flair complete the album’s redneck pretense without overdoing it, as they add just enough deep fried ambiance to give the album heaps of atmosphere amid the slovenly hardcore guise. ‘Where the Sewer Meets the Sea’ and ‘Pillars of Tomorrow, Piles of Yesterday’ are the albums most truly white trash-core, gravy soaked offerings with plenty of soulful, clean gregariousness from Ben but both settle into a gaping maws of drawn out sludge. The only thing missing is a cover of ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ to make this album any more Southern, but the rocking instrumental ‘Vertigo’ is close enough and the brilliantly named album closer ‘Running Out of Neck’ rumbles with the resonance of an idling Fat Boy before it closes with what can only described as an epically southern, throat clearing warmth.

Beaten Back to Pure’s ‘Dixie core’ is a fine offering that mixes a massive Bourbon induced hangover with a 3 day meth binge in to one brawling sonic expulsion. Often lulling and hazy, but equally as attention getting as a knuckle duster to the face, The Burning South is perfect for those who wish Down were a tad heavier and Crowbar would have a little more variety. You’uns better get this ‘ere album, ya hear?

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
September 14th, 2004

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