Saturday, July 25, 2009

ComFail MySpace
Release Date: 2009
Label: Self-released
Release Type: Full-Length
Genre: Grindcore

This is without a doubt one of the better DIY grind albums I have heard, especially coming from a band that is not already established. Anyone familiar with their first release, Perversions Of Guilt, will be greatly (and immediately) impressed with the production. Those unfamiliar with Perversions would never think this was recorded and mixed in a house. HealNoEvil realizes all the potential hidden in the travesty that was the production of Perversions - and the band made no effort to mask their anger at the music industry for doing it to them. Note to Complete Failure - stay pissed!

The band's tone sounds a little lower than standard thrash tuning, so one of the more noticeable benefits in the production comes from the bass. The tone/distortion allows the bass, on one hand, to remain audible, while on the other hand to cover its duties both in adding necessary depth to each song and serving as an all-important backbone. Just to clarify, do not expect 80's crossover basslines - but do expect that added punch of being able to hear what you are feeling.

So, what about the music? Over 12 songs covering 30 minutes they offer up a nice slab of unpretentious, hardcore-influenced grind. For those familiar with the band, the major difference this time around is that Complete Failure sound much more focused as songwriters and musicians throughout. The songs have purpose and are well presented - they are not just blasting to blast or sludging along for the sake of hardcore. As to be expected there is plenty of plodding, dissonant hardcore, plenty of the requisite straightforward grind and their signature full-speed-ahead assaults. What ties this all together is how well they transition from one style of riffing to the next. This is where their focus and comfort kicks in.

For the most part, if a song's length is under 2:30 it will be grind focused. The longer songs start off with (and feature) their dissonant/hardcore influences but also show off their skills in the aforementioned transitioning department. By looking over the playlist you can see how much of it grinds as well as how they spaced everything out. And they did all this in a house... Amazing.

I'm impressed by this effort. There were many moments on Perversions that I enjoyed - and just as many that left wondering if they were going to be another band that turns about- face instead of realizing their potential. Complete Failure came through. I recommend this to any grind head, but especially to fans of "Black Army Jacket" style powerviolence acts, since they will better appreciate the blended genres. Anyone with little to no interest in hardcore should still check this out as it definitely does grind and is also a great alternative to whatever you prefer.

Good luck buying this - there were only 100 limited edition copies made, and those were distributed on a brief tour. But do not fret: you can least listen to all of it in hi-def on their website, here. I cannot imagine they will horde this for long...


Andrew Childers said...

it's nice to hear them get another crack at this after steve austin totally raped their debut album.

206 said...

Technically, they haven't received that second crack - they made this in their house.

They should get a distro deal out of this. The trick is, knowing the industry, getting the distro without the attached record deal.