Raw Snails Army

Gastropode is probably French for slugs and snails, or perhaps more general univalve animals, because it is almost exactly the same word as Gastropod which, as a struggling Zoology major, I know for a god damned fact includes slugs and snails. I could Google it, of course, but I just don’t think knowing for certain will change anything about this record. The album art has a definite slime-trail-leaving creature motif, so I am going with slugs and snails.

What Gastropode does is take a couple of basses, a few vocalists and a drummer, and churn out some fairly European sounding grindcore. And, to be sure, as far as bass-only, vomited-vocalizing grind goes, these guys do a pretty bang up job. There is a massive, but strangely sharp sound to the “HM-2 and nothing else” driven basses that actually recalls Nasum et all’s Swedishy grind sound.

Musically, the band’s compositions (I love grind, but man, sometimes it really is a stretch to use that term when discussing the stuff) are straight forward and catchy, in the above mentioned Nasum-ish way. Though this is not in any sense technically impressive music, it has a lively, mosh pit feel to it that keeps it from falling into simple adolescent noise.

There is of course a grossly outsized tongue driven deep into cheek to this music. Consider the fact that they have a song titled “Escarre Go”, and another called “Fairy Snails/Once Upon a Slime” (which clocks in at an epic 2:10, making it the “In My Time Of Dying” of this record…) and, almost inevitably, “Slug Mucus Bukkake” as evidence that they are not taking anything terribly seriously – or adultly – here.

The vocals, it must be warned, are not going to be to everyone’s taste. They range from vomit to pig-squeal to burp, and do so to a degree even moderate grind fans may be turned off by. They are way up in the mix, too, so it is hard to just ignore them or pretend they are part of the general sound. If you don’t like this kind of vocalizing, you should just steer clear.

But if these are exactly the types of things that draw you to a record, then the overall quality of the production and silliness of the performers, not to mention the simple, almost AC/DC simplicity of the songs makes this a far better listen than one would expect. And, hey, I am a sucker for univalve puns.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Chris Sessions
January 18th, 2017


  1. Commented by: Kevin E.

    Yeah I like the guitar sound (very Rotten Sound-ish awesome buzz), but damn those vocals just kill it.

  2. Commented by: Mahmoudozor

    It’s a beautiful thing to see a French underground act being chroniqued on your website.

    Gastropode are really respected in France mostly due to the fact that all of the band members are gay, trans and queers. They are pushing up the gay metal scene and need supports.

    Snail may reefer to the trail of “sticky/bizarre stuff” they leave behind them. Which is close to the texture of cum.

    Long live to them and by the way “The Paroxism of a goy him” is my fav one. I’ve heard the song got inspired by a man so “fragile” that all his live was an entire paroxism.

  3. Commented by: HP

    Sorry, the gastropod idea has already been adopted and executed much, much better by the British band “Slugdge”. Granted, the music of both bands is different, but in my opinion the Brits are far superior. Check them out.

  4. Commented by: Gastropode

    Hi, just to say to “Kevin E.” that we do not use any guitars on this album.

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