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REVIEW: Curl Up and Die – The One Above All, The End Of All That Is

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The album features a song Tom Cruise could really get behind … and other tales of Curl Up and Die

Featuring the timber-shaking tune “Antidepressants Are Depressing,” this album’s release date, was pushed forward due to the controversy surrounding Tom Cruise.

What? It wasn’t at all? I’m making shit up? The band would be offended at my spoiling a review of their album with any mention of Tom “quadricep” Cruise?

Darn.

So the album it is then.
Band: Curl Up and Die. Album: The One Above All, The End Of All That Is

Out of the gate like WWE wrestler Mankind (Is that a better celeb reference? What no celebs at all or the band members will come over and stomp on me hard? Um, OK) is “An Uncomfortable Routine.”

There’s a jangling – albeit fast – guitar backing up the scream-sung vocals on AUR. The same sound flashes up throught the rest of the album as well, dominated and blackened by Matt Fuchs crushtifying six-string shredding.

As well as they try to hide it in the music, there’s some real wordbound poetry here – as can be read inside:

I stick to my sheets like failed reproduction
Soaking up on slowing down and the only thing
worse than being alone is when I’m not alone
I am in love with what I’ve lost
I do not want what I have got

(from, An uncomfortable Routine)

“Antidepressants …” Cruises in next, with 34 words of stress (relief): “…Our hearts are over-medicated / An overdosed America / Sharing a closet with our skeletons …”

The rest of the album is just, dare we say it, a lot of fun, with Ryan Hartery, bass, Mike Minnick, vocals and Jesse Fitts, drums tearing it up.

“Instrumental” seeks some serious melody of the three instruments with Minnick crashing over the top in time – rhythmic, like a good crowd surfer. The next track up, “Blackout” has the same pattern, with a Led Zeppelin, metal-heyday feel for the first minute, 15 of just muted, quietly building instruments that continue underneath Minnick’s toil. Rather than the growling singer pushing the song, the instruments are clearly the driving force here.

What separates this from much of the same hardcore metal of the same? In one word, humor.

Song titles that make you laugh do hide many serious points. But with titles such as “Ultra Carb Diet: Carpooling Stupid Fucking Life”, “I’m Trying To Fly To The Moon Using Two Magnets and Willpower” and “Blood Mosh Hips Hair Lips Pills Fuck Death”, the chuckle comes first.

The CD, too, has a Shel Silverstein-esque circle-with-a-nose face, and the Dave Gorum-designed cartoonery is a cool refreshment from the often-repeated black-all-around look of much of hardcore (to go along with the “hardpose”)

Which pretty much sums up the band – refreshing.

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About temple

Always been a writer, always maintained an interest in politics, how people communicate and fantasy worlds within photography and books. Previously wrote for Blogcritics back in 2005 and interested in exploring the issues and topics I'm interested - the changing landscape of entertainment. all from the POV of a creator first, consumer, second.
  • sdfg

    This review doesn’t explain anything. Probably the worst review I’ve read in a long time, ha ha.

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