Concrete Lung – Subtract Nerve (Armalyte Records)
Experimental Metal duo Concrete Lung released their new EP recently, they describe it as ‘Continuing their journey towards oblivion.’ Louder Than War’s Adrian Bloxham’s been checking it out for us, read his thoughts below.
This lot are not happy; this music seems without any hope at all. It’s bleak and cold and they describe it as ‘a radio transmission from Hell’. They use repetitive drum patterns to break you down and slam huge guitars and doom laden bass into your head. Their sound is not worthless. It’s no gonzo cheap shot with growled vocals and bass drum rolls. It’s intelligent and hardcore through and through.
The first track is also the best, ‘User’ gives you eight minutes plus of Concrete Lung at their very finest, it builds from new age chanting and wailing, whispering and feedback and grows into a relentless hard drum pattern that just lays the foundation for the droning sludgy guitars and bass. It just carries on, taking you all the way down into despair. They use quiet too, stripping away all the immediate guitar and just makes you even more aware of the underlying hatred and loathing.
They are harder and more in your face with Self – Shriek (Intensity) and the start of Waste, but it’s when they build up the pressure without exploding that Concrete Lung truly come into their own. The held back exercise in restraint that comes through in Rot and Seethe is all the more powerful for not giving into the noise explosion that they seem to be building up to.
The album is a hard, heavy and oppressive record. It is relentless in its patterns, just grinding on and on. The overwhelming feeling you are left with as Hidden ends in sobbing is cold, bleak emptiness. A welcome addition to the tomes of metal oppressiveness.
Concrete Lung return to the UK for an exclusive show on Saturday 7th September, as main support to alternative legends (and soundtrack to our youth) Sheep On Drugs. The Facebook event page is HERE. Tickets can be bought HERE.
All words by Adrian Bloxham. More work by Adrian on Louder Than War can be found here.