Misery Index
Dissent EP

A taster EP to follow-up the ravaging Retaliate debut album, Dissent, released on the band’s own label, is a 5 song EP with the title track split into four parts. With Kevin Talley back in the fold for this EP’s recording, the drumming becomes immediately improved and is also emphasized immeasurably by a Scott Hull mastering job that gives the bass drum a Vader-ish, almost overproduced clout.

However, also noticeable is a subtle injection of melody that gives Misery Index some measure of intellectual refrain amid their crusty, grinding punk based, death metal. Part two of the title track “Exception to the Ruled” is first to delve into Misery Index’s new found vicious harmonies, as the addition of Bruce Grieg (also ex Dying Fetus) along side Sparky Voyles appears to allow Misery Index to develop their sound a little, especially in the grind core rarity solo department. Don’t panic, Netherton and Co. are still the ‘ex Dying Fetus’ dudes, and in my opinion, rock harder than their former band now does, as shown on the blistering “The Imperial Ambition” with its familiar Napalm Death-like grinding power chords and far heftier grooves.

The entire EP is a smart evolution for the band not content to rely on their past efforts and simply delivers predictable material. Along with the deft introduction of subtle melodies, Misery Index have also managed to become heavier and more conditioned to deliver a rampant take on grindcore that’s as malevolent as it is powerful, just listen to “Multiply By Fire”. Netherton’s lyrics remain politically and socially charged as heard on “Defector”; “Taking every cause you champion, you were an overnight political machine, you carried forth the flag of your elders, and quoted Marx for the class bound breed“. But Misery Index aren’t just a soap box band, as their message is carried by an experienced and forceful sound that speaks volumes musically as well as lyrically and the this explosive total package looks to be improving at a rate that by their next full length album (due in 2006), could see them reach a (dare I say it?)….legendary status.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
July 1st, 2004

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