There’s no doubt in my mind that 2009 will be seen as something of an Annus (stop fucking sniggering) mirabilis for grind. We’ve had corking albums from Napalm Death, Brutal Truth, Agoraphobic Nosebleed and Burnt By The Sun (OK, it’s not technically grind but it’s grindy in bits. Shut up). I’m sure there’ve been more, but I can’t listen to every band that comes out can I?
Anyway, there’s another band to add to that stellar list… hello Magrudergrind! My first introduction to the band came a few years ago when I heard a song of theirs on lastfm. It was called I’d Like a Refund or Expect Arson Against Your Place of Business. Snappy eh?
Two years later, we have a debut long player, and it pleases me to tell you that it’s a bloody riot.
Magrudergrind are definitely something of an old school concern. The production is gloriously raw, the music is pleasingly brutal and the record detonates with the subtlety of a pipe bomb in a nursery. Even the artwork hearkens back to times of yore. Garish yellow, perforated by a stark black and white collage? It’s like Napalm Death’s Scum artwork has taken a Wells-esque journey in a grind powered time machine.
The Protocols of Anti-Sound kicks off proceedings with a squall of feedback, slowly and surely building up to an explosive flurry of blastbeats and gnarled vocals. The rest of the album picks up on the opening track’s pace and absolutely pegs it the rest of the way. It wouldn’t be a modern grind album either if we didn’t have dramatic snippets from films and TV shows between tracks, and Magrudergrind deliver. Thankfully though, they don’t go into overkill with these samples, unlike some bands (hello Berzerker!), and they convincingly add to the fevered aggression of the record.
It’s hard to pick a highlight because… well, it’s a grind album isn’t it? It’s kind of hard to pick one forty-five second burst of noise out from another when you’ve got twenty-one to choose from. Actually, that’s a little unfair. Magrudergrind are pretty adept at changing pace and shifting things up a little. There’s even a hip hop influence on the track Heavier Bombing. Remarkably though, it isn’t complete shit like most metal/hip hop hybrids and actually sounds quite sinister. There’s also a whiff of Eyehategod around some of the slower tracks, which is always welcome.
At just under half an hour, the record doesn’t outstay its welcome. Seriously, an hour of this would wreck your brain. It’s a pleasingly short, sharp burst of noise that will find itself fondled often in a grind fan’s collection. Go investigate, or expect arson against your place of business (your penis).
Magrudergrind's self-titled album is out now on Candlelight records.