Serious Grind
Still Only Working With 2 Inches

Over the years, I’ve had a few thank you emails from bands for a review or interview, but when I reviewed the debut album from Pennsylvania’s Serious Grind here, and subsequently interviewed them for another publication, main man Josh Ebel thanked me gratuitously and we stayed in fairly regular contact. He seemed one of the few musicians that seemed genuinely thankful for any press he and his band could get.

So after he contacted me to review their second album, I was happy to do it, and was pleasantly surprised to find my name in the thank you’s/credits. Listen, I’m not trying to be conceited or blow my own horn, but in 7 years of writing for 3-4 web and print publications, this was a first, and regardless of how independent or small Serious Grind are, I thought it was kind of cool and it gave me warm fuzzies. So yeah, thanks Josh. Don’t think I’m gonna go easy on your second album though…

On to the music, as with their debut album, Serious Grind play a raw, pot fueled form of tongue in cheek (and other places) death metal/grindcore. With a new guitarist (Joe Liebling replaces Larry Ebel), their seems to have been a slight shift to a more mid paced and riff based sound, with even a few solos here and there, but the general themes of porn, pot and poon seem intact.

Of note is the production; recorded at the house/studio of Deadbird’s guitarist Chuck Schaaf, the album was recorded over three party filled (more on that later) days on 2 inch, 28 track analog tape-a rarity in today’s metal scene. The result is a warm, organic and enjoyable natural sound I have not heard in many years.

The music itself is obviously inspired by early Cephalic Carnage, when they were a bit less serious and I hear some Pungent Stench here also especially in the more sexual/humorous tracks like “Touching Your Lips, But Not Kissing Your Mouth” and “In Your Sister’s Pant’s”, and truth be told the bands’ musical persona is a bit ‘icky’ at times, meaning I feel a bit dirty after listening to them. However, they seem to have a grasp of groovy, almost ‘stoner grind’ riffage that’s rife with a red eyed haze and a grin. Loping, staggering tracks tracks like “How Serious is Your Grind?”, “Al Deitz” and “Joe Lottery” are broken up by more typical grind bursts of “Beatdown”, “Chuck’s House” and “Sound Guy” (complete with Dethklok sample). There’s even a somber acoustic clsoer in “Stillborn”. However, the band still isn’t quite ‘there’ yet when it comes to penning truly classic, great music, as often it comes across as solid, yet largely forgettable background music for a gathering of stoners and rockers.

While the actual CD is only 23 minutes, the release comes with a 53 minute DVD that actually quite the window into the life not only of Serious Grind, but the life of hardworking independent grindcore act trying to just make music. Chronicling the band’s 1000 mile trip from their home state to Fayetteville, Arkansas to record the album and the subsequent three days, the DVD (subtitled What The Fuck Do You Want for Only $10?) is shot by the band on a held camera and there’s lots of footage of the studio recording, the band partying, cats and dogs wrestling, roach clips, puking, the band partying, post shower interviews, some live songs from some basement shows the band did while in Arkansas and the band partying. It’s all very honest, unscripted and lo-fi, but rather enjoyable, showing that the band is in fact a group of guys that love playing music, and that the lifestyle certainly isn’t the one of rock stars.

So yeah-go grab this and give some hardworking, likeable fellows some cash-they might need it to make some more Weedka….

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 11th, 2008

Comments

  1. Commented by: Josh

    Hey,
    Everyone thinks my name is Anxt, but its Ebel, I swear it!


  2. Commented by: swampthang

    Chronicling lol, sweet band


  3. Commented by: screech grind

    Thanks for the review Erik, rock on!


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