Hunab Ku
The Gaze Inward

If someone walked up to you on the street, threw a handful of Sunkist Fruit Gems in your face and then whacked you in the nuts with a large mackerel, it’d be about as wtf surprising as the first few minutes of this album. This is the kind of spastic, dizzying assault first perfected by The Dillinger Escape Plan, but it’s even choppier and more maniacal. What at first seems like random squiggles and blasts of noise is actually quite ordered and listenable. In a way it reminds me of a sped-up version of last year’s excellent release from Florida tech-death outfit Gigan.

Unfortunately, things fall apart pretty quickly, as Hunab Ku falls into the same trap that I think plagues most spazzcore outfits – they forget how to craft a good song. And yes, I do think you can harness this choppy, spastic sound and craft a good song out of it, without compromising the key elements of the genre in the process.

None of the songs here ever seem to stay in one place for too long. They frequently and abruptly drop into slow, dreamlike interludes, complete with (an admittedly great) Mike Patton falsetto imitation by vocalist Mike Gilmore. It’s pretty clear that the Mike Patton guest-spot Dillinger EP, Irony is a Dead Scene, was big touchstone for these guys, and that’s fine. What I just didn’t dig on, though, is the fact that those slowed-down, cough-syrup-high sections seem to be inserted at random, destroying most attempts at creating a good, albeit choppy groove. Weirdness for weirdness’ sake is fine and good, but focus is not a bad thing to have as well.

To give some more context, I would have rather this been more like Mr. Bungle‘s California (which I love), and less like Disco Volante (which I sold). The overall sound and musicianship here is terrific, with some truly demented guitarwork by Luke Jaeger from Sleep Terror. It just never pulls into an experience that I’d want to listen to repeatedly.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jordan Itkowitz
April 10th, 2009

Comments

Leave a Reply

Privacy notice: When you submit a comment, your creditentials, message and IP address will be logged. A cookie will also be created on your browser with your chosen name and email, so that you do not need to type them again to post a new comment. Your post and details will also go through an automatic spam check via Akismet's servers and maybe held up for further approval. We purge our logs from your meta-data at frequent intervals.

  • Fluisteraars - Bloem
  • Cianide - Unhumanized EP
  • Abhomine - Proselyte Parasite Plague
  • Porta Nigra - Schöpfungswut
  • Abigail WIlliams - Walk Beyond the Dark
  • Suicide Silence - Become the Hunter
  • Annihilator - Ballistic, Sadistic
  • Hell:On/Pripjat - A Glimpse Beyond (Split)
  • Silvertomb - Edge of Existence
  • Necropanther - The Doomed City
  • Lorna Shore - Immortal
  • Ian Blurton Future Now - Signals Through the Flames
  • Voice of Ruin - Acheron
  • Inverted Matter - Detach
  • Marrasmieli - Between Land and Sky