Friday, 30 September 2016

ALBUM REVIEW: 30,000 Monkies - "I Ate Myself to Grow Twice As Big"

By: Jay Hampshire

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 16/04/2016
Label: ConSouling Sounds



Noisy, experimental and not without its moments of bristling intensity, “I Ate Myself …” is a record that piques interest with seven chaotic, constantly shifting tracks bursting with a myriad of influences, underpinned by a borderline disregard for the safe confines of genre.

“I Ate Myself to Grow Twice As Big” CD//DD//LP track listing  

1). Melæna
2). Coproliet
3). Coccinelle
4). Monuntainesque II
5). Apollo 10
6). Mountainesque I
7). Juice

The Review

Belgian noisesmiths 30,000 Monkies return with their second studio album ‘I Ate Myself To Grow Twice As Big’, seven chaotic, constantly shifting tracks bursting with a myriad of influences, underpinned by a borderline disregard for the safe confines of genre.

‘Melæna’ kicks in with hoarse, anguished vocals set in amongst cycling, fuzzed out riffing. It all seems far off, echoing, but the drums usher in a main riff composed of heavy tom work and whining, jarring chords. Muscular, overdriven bass raises its head, and the track alternates between these two patterns before dropping into a hardcore infused run that’s shaken up with heavy, frantic kick work and maddening guitar lines. It’s chaotic, a tad sloppy, but wonderfully organic.

Coproliet’ is a tumbling rush of density and urgency, military snare building then stopping suddenly, bright, fragile, strummed chords replacing it before being replaced in turn with a mass of groaning, feedback laden guitars. Coccinelle’ is a roiling lump of sub-doom guitars and unsettling high-pitched vocals, chords growing in strength, well-spaced and threatening. The atonal chants build by layers, and it grows into a more upbeat affair, picking up pace, locked in tight, exhausting itself before lapsing into meditative noise.

‘Mountainesque II’ drives from the get go, enraged well-bottom shouts and thumping drums powering through a thicket of tremolo guitars and whining feedback, bleak and paranoid, the crescendo of a track stretched far beyond normal limits. ‘Apollo 10’ swells with ‘radio’ noise, coming in waves, spreading unease, punctured by haunting shouts, before wild, scraping guitars and clattering drums throw things for a loop, before things break apart with whining noise and echoing, overlapping vox loops.

Mountainesque I’ is like a man railing against being trapped in an 80’s film score, reverb drenched shouts fighting against rushing synth layers, drums and guitar occasionally raising their heads to belt out grinding chords. Closer Juice’ kicks in with dreamy synth and slow, pounding drums. Strident, barked vocals come in, along with big, ringing chords, before everything falls down a spiralling rabbit hole of grinding guitars, descending drums and sweeping synths. It’s intense, dramatic, and bleak stuff, which is offset by the tracks’ zenith – layers of bright, ghostly synths that evoke the slightly unsettling climax of a psychedelic space opera.

Noisy, experimental and not without its moments of bristling intensity, “I Ate Myself …” is a record that piques interest with its cleverly constructed tracks. But, the self-same tracks struggle to find true individual identity, to stand apart from one another fully, which isn’t helped by a recording that lacks overall dynamic impact, seeing everything played safely towards an aural middle ground. A solid enough release, it sadly won’t leave a lasting impression on all but the most ardent noise fan.

“I Ate Myself To Grow Twice As Big” is available here


Band info: facebook || bandcamp

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