False Flag

India’s crust/sludge/grind punk maniacs False Flag impressed me with their rotten demo debut about 2 years back.  I’m not sure what rock I was under but since that came out they’ve release a three song shorty officially titled EP.  There’s a lot of good stuff coming out of India the past couple of years and it’d be a damn crying shame if I didn’t give this few month old release a spotlight.

Reminding me of the noisy, pained days of Slap a Ham Records and Pessimiser, this quartet isn’t pissing around and they waste no time in destroying the fuck out of you.  Coming off like a combination of Discharge, Extreme Noise Terror, Skitsystem, His Hero is Gone, Cavity’s faster paced stuff (the vocals especially), Fall of the Bastards and a radiated version of Jerry’s Kids there’s no time to breath and nowhere to hide from these lunatics.  “Spectrum Disorder” kicks off with a squealing noise guitar flux, bloated sludge bass lines from secret weapon Kamran Raza and a dirge-y rising tide of riffs that rocket off into the deep end of staccato thrash, lightning fast blast beat interjections and powerhouse d-beats.  The twin sludge riffs from Shaunak Phadnis and Rohit Chaoji reach a carwreck climax at 1:20 as a nascent Sabbath groove is raped by Unsane-y, Spencer-styled swipes of almost melodic noise.  The influences are all over the place with hideous, strep throat vocal barks topping things off to a sky filled with bombs and planes crashing into each other.  Feedback is used as a 5 instrument, prefacing a tremolo-laden black metal climax which sends this song off into the apocalypse.  There are so many changes to keep up with here and the task is damn near impossible to do so.

“Sisyphus’ Lament” utilizes higher, piercing minor key punk riff runs atop a Scandinavian crust percussive impact.  Blast beat artillery, spraying cymbal crashes and noisy lead-style guitars ram headlong into a stuttering double-kick drumming assault; a stop/start chug from Hell which is led off to a gallows and a noose made of churning, skin melting acid sludge.  That Cavity or even Grief inspired influence returns when the guitars feedback and Raza brings in a molten bass groove that reads a 20 on the Richter scale.  Then when you expect the entire band to lock onto a full on sludge groove the riffs turn to shrieking blackened insanity and murderous blasts from beyond the grave.  Sprawling EP ender “Unbroken” couples multiple genres at the hip into an unholy human centipede spanning vomiting sludge, glass shard cut crust, sweeping post-rock guitar melodies that boil into black metal malice and more screaming noise than you can shake a stick at.  A good closer should encompass everything on an album or EP while fleshing the ideas out into further uncharted waters and this song delivers the goods.

EP is a fantastic introduction to False Flag and if we’re lucky that full-length release should be dropping soon.  Anyone into dirty slimy crust that culls its influence from the 90s/early 00s heyday should find something to love here.  There is some real deal pain and anger here that anyone with an ear for the genre should check out.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jay S
June 8th, 2018


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