Lost Sphere Project-3rd Level to Internal Failure (Division Records)

Strap yourselves in for one hell of a genre bending mind fuck of a grind EP!
Release Date: 
6 Jun 2011 - 12:30am


Switzerland's Lost Sphere Project is back with an EP of twisted, experimental, brutal cybergrind, 3rd Level to Internal Failure. The Calvingrad four-piece gets things going with Paradoxical Sights, a track combining Noisear-esque elements of techy grind with brutal breakdowns, djent passages, shifting time signatures, vocal squeals, and 808 bass drops. That's a lot to pack into a sub-two-minute track, but you quickly learn that Lost Sphere Project isn't about making it easy on the listener. Devotees features liquefied riffs and schizoid drum work, along with more bass drops and a sound that comes across as a mix of Meshuggah meets the genre-defying tactics of Between the Buried and Me all mixed together by grindcore's rusty blender blades.

This is not your father's punked out grind. On tracks like Post Tenebra Chao the band is obviously making a concerted effort to be all over the place, but the members know how to stitch it together. It has the potential to derail into an all-out train wreck, and could require multiple listens to wrap the head rightly round this one, but patience lads, patience is a virtue. That being said, it's around this point that the 808's start to get a bit overdone. That's three tracks in a row boys. It's fun to play with a new toy, but leave that thing out at the top of the stairs one more time and daddy's going to run it through the trash compactor three or four times. Ah, that's better. Now delve into Infinite Necropolis. Anyone who can head bang in correct time to this one must have gotten their PhD. in advanced astromathematics at the same school that the drummer obviously attended. There are straight ahead passages to be found, but they are mere moments of clarity—preludes to yet another hook thrown from outside the field of vision that sends us back into a subconscious stupor, clamoring for a way back to some semblance of understanding.

Yet another 808 on the following track, Dreams Are Gone. I told you I'd take it away. That was a promise, not a threat. It's going on the top shelf of the closet where you can't reach it. You can have it back two albums from now. Keep whining and I'll make it two albums and and EP. Now, moving on, the vocals are tightly condensed and layered alongside atypical hammer-on and pull-off riffs. It's progressive light packed into two minute songs. As in all things grind, nothing is dragged out for too long. A vibe is created, but it isn't around for a long enough time to get tiring. It is hard to wrap the lobes around, but there's too much metal out there that is spoon fed to us anyway. Is this the acidic antidote? The most grinding track thus far comes next, Idyllic Disaster, which is straight ahead blast before diving headlong into early era Dillinger Escape Plan mind fuck once again. The basic grind ethic also comes through in Apathy. You can't mess with people's heads the whole time, or it will go over too many heads. Pretty soon, you've got nothing but eyes staring at the sky and infinite pairs of nostrils to stare down from the stage.

But then it's back to the Dillinger Escape Plan meets Ed Gein inaccessibility. It can be hard to keep up, but this is the kind of dedication to a premise that inspires devotion, if not record sales. But was that ever the goal anyway? Challenge is the operative word here. Vultures of Conscience follows with its brutal death snare sound. The drummer is exemplary in his precision and power, just lose the drops. There's no need for triggers in this sound. Continuing the genre-per-minute pace is Vaginal Excavation, a 26 second grinding brutal death track. And just in case there weren't enough people with “What the fuck” looks on their faces already, the album is closed out by Cetacean Rippers, featuring spoken word in French about dinosaurs over an electro-industrial beat that would make Rammstein clutch awkwardly at their lederhosen. It's an odd note to end on for a band that might just be out to confuse and abuse. It's almost impossible to pinpoint where Lost Sphere Project is coming from. Then again, maybe that's exactly what this band intended. Grind on LSP, grind on.