Album Thoughts | Acid Bath: When the Kite String Pops (Random Review)

As I said in my most recent update post, I said that i’ll be doing random reviews. Well, this is the first one (and first of three to come this week), and what better album to start with than my favorite one of all time, by my absolute favorite band of all time? I think it’s 100% appropriate. So here goes…

Acid Bath is a band who I have an eternal love for. Although they have only released 2 albums in their entire existence, they are 2 albums that I will forever cherish and will never, ever, ever, EVER get tired of. I discovered these guys 11 years ago when I went on some random dude’s Myspace page and heard Scream of the Butterfly. After hearing that song for the first time, I immediately looked them up and gave the rest of the songs on the album and their other album a listen, and I was hooked. The rest is history. All these years later and every time I listen to both of these albums, It’s like hearing them for the first time allover again. I love it every single time. This band’s body of work, as small as it is, has gotten me through a lot of shitty times in the last decade plus. Good times as well. Everything about this band, from frontman Dax Riggs’ voice and lyrics to the overall muddy, sludgey sound of the music altogether to the artwork and imagery has kept me a fan for all these years thus far and always will. I will be reviewing Paegan Terrorism Tactics in the future. I’m not going to do a Discography Dialogue on them because there are only these 2 albums and they are both deserving of a full review, so that’s what i’ll do. Starting with this one. My favorite of the 2.

When the Kite String Pops is an album that you can’t exactly categorize because it’s a mix of so many hints from so many different styles and genres. It’s a blend of southern style melodic Sludge, as heard in tracks like opener The Blue, Dr. Seuss is Dead, Finger Paintings of the Insane and God Machine; slow, Sludgey, almost Eyehategod-style songs that have this swampy, southern melodic drawl to them that creates this very unique balance of slow, thick, chunky riffs, bassy, dragging drums and the ever so recognizable dueling raspy, harsh and sweet, echoey clean vocals of Dax himself. Also in the mix, you got the psychedelic Rock-driven Tranquilized, that sounds like something straight out of the 70s that somehow found it’s way into the early 90s and adopted it’s aesthetic. This song is just full of psychedelic riffs and classic 70s style grooves while still maintaining that harsh, Grungey contemporary 90s tone and attitude and mixes it all together in an incredibly unique and smooth way and it just fits together perfectly. Then there are parts that have a bit of a Punk & Hardcore feel, with tracks such as Cheap Vodka and my favorite songs on the album Toubabo Koomi, Jezebel, What Color is Death and Dope Fiend. The more fast-paced and bellicose side of Acid Bath is displayed on these tracks while still maintaining the Louisiana-style melodic feel that makes it so unique.

Topping things off, we have the pure Southern Rock influence that we hear in Scream of the Butterfly and The Bones of Baby Dolls, which are slow, acoustic, melancholic, ballady hymns that really exhibit the versatility and artistic drive this band had and the darkness that drove it. Then there’s another one of my favorite tracks, Mortician’s Flame, that exhibits a balance between Grungey melodic Rock and dirty, thick Sludge. Dax’s croony, broodingly harmonic vocals, mixed with his disturbingly poetic lyrics that revolve around death, drugs, murder and morbid esoterica really paint a picture of what you’re listening to in your mind. That’s one of the things I love about this band and this album. You’re not only hearing it, you’re seeing it. Like some beautifully fucked up hallucination.

To say this album is an experience of a listen would be an understatement. It’s a melancholic, psychedelic, grimy and fucked up experience from start to finish. These guys will disturb you just as much as they will intrigue you. They had that sort of effect that not many other bands can say they have. They were a special group of musicians that tragically disbanded way too soon. They took the idea of Sludge, Grunge, Doom, Punk and Hardcore and blended them into something that I doubt any other band could have pulled off. Their style was different for their time and still different for today. This is a unique and special kind of album that I myself can’t say enough about to do it justice. That’s why it’s my all-time favorite. Every time I listen to it it’s like my first time hearing it allover again. I never get tired of it and never will. No other album has ever done that for me.

Until next time.

-Scvm

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