Monday, 17 February 2014

Rabbits - SOS (Singles, Other Shit) (Album Review)


















Album Type : Compilation
Date Released : 3/12/2013
Label : Eolian Empire

SOS (Singles, Other Shit) Track Listing:

A-side ORIGINALS: 
1. Wooze 03:57
2. No (More) Depth 00:56
3. Riff Fuck Reap 03:06
4. Slow Mars 04:14
5. Lungs  05:10
6. Bees Revolt 02:37

B-side COVERS:
1. Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing (Discharge) 01:26
2. Hard Times (Cro-Mags) 01:56
3. One and All (Rudimentary Peni) 01:24
4. Rebel Girl (Bikini Kill) 02:48
5. Evacuate (Negative Approach) 02:35
6. I'd Rather Be Sleeping (D.R.I.) 01:32
7. Think Twice (Poison Idea) 00:46
8. Straight Edge (Minor Threat) 00:50
9. Wasted (Black Flag) 0:54

Bio :

RABBITS is at it again. Steadfast in their determination to not give a shit what you or anyone else thinks, they burrowed deep into their own rabbit hole to scrape together a mish-mash of down-and-dirty tracks from every corner of their sorry-ass storied past.

SOS (Singles, Other Shit)is a disturbing and dissonant distress signal from the underground assembled from LP session bonus tracks, 7-inch tracks, unreleased demos, radio performances, alternate versions, and practice space jams recorded from 2006 to 2013. With few overdubs and mostly single live takes, these tracks capture RABBITS doing what they do best: cranking out bludgeoning full-throttle hardcore noise rock until your ears are ringing and you see stars; pummeling drums, gnarled guitars, maniacal vocals, and deranged solos. The A-side comprises six original songs of serious mayhem and downright fuckery, while the B-side collects nine covers of their favorite ‘80s punk and hardcore songs, mistreated as if their own, no doubt to piss you off. Please help them. They clearly need it.

The RABBITS-run outsider collective Eolian Empire will deposit SOS (Singles, Other Shit) December 3rd via digital download and cassette; old-school as fuck but like totally fresh, yo.  The tape will also be released in Europe on Czech label Stoned to Death at an undisclosed date to be figured out.

Review :

Portland's Rabbits have put out a sordid collection, airing their dirty sonic laundry in public with the release of 'SOS (Singles, Other Shit)'. Which is of course given the quality of the noise manufacturers in question can only be a good thing. This is an album of re-workings, singles, jam recordings and an awful lot of 80s punk and hardcore covers. It's noisy and abrasive and a kick in the teeth.

Their stuff is firmly rooted in noise, with all the usual trimmings and influences. They excel at what they do because they have been plugging away at it for years now and this album goes to show just what they are capable of.

'Wooze' has that Crover style big hitting as the backbone, and some nice scuzzed out riffs. I love how this song is confused as to whether it's a punk tune or a metal one, and to a large extent that's a great way to describe the appeal that Rabbits have as a group. Noise rock at its absolute best as a subgenre is schizophrenic in nature, wide-eyed and unpredictable. Neat track.

'Slow Mars' is even more evidence of this. I know I said that they play noise rock, but is this doom? It sure could be, but they probably don't give much of a fuck about tags I guess. This is slow, morose and plodding. It thumps away relentlessly. It should be played loud, too. The recording is so raw that at certain points the guitars sound like they were square pegs being rammed into a triangular hole, but that only adds to the charm.

In regards to the covers portion of 'SOS' the absolute standout for me is the Discharge choice, and it's a pretty brave one too - they nail the ferocity. 'Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing' is downright legendary in hardcore and crossover circles, its tempo and buzz a perfect fit for the Rabbits standard of attack. Squealing guitars and that sense of urgency are translated well, and they manage to make it their own somehow.

If you are new to Rabbits at all then this is an ideal introduction. If you're already a fan then this brings together some rare and nice elements of their catalogue in one place. Either way it's a win situation, and well worth the price of admission. 'SOS' is pretty special on all fronts.

Get yer raucous on, people.

Words by : Matt Fitton

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