There are certain bands that just have that uncanny ability to reach into the deepest, darkest and most forbidden trenches of their souls and minds and create something truly fucked up and downright terrifying. Us Black Metal dorks are the most familiar with this. Bands like Xasthur, Black Cilice, Ævangelist & Gnaw Their Tongues are all known for having a knack for striking fear into out hearts using their own unique forms of audio terror. Death Metal has also given us gems like this in Impetuous Ritual & Portal. Not every band has this ability, but there are some who can just entrance us into a world of abysmal horror and insanity.
San Antonio, Texas’ Intestinal Disgorge are one of these bands. Starting out as a noisy Goregrind band in the late 90s and leaving a trail of blood, feces, piss, vomit and entrails throughout the 2000s with numerous albums, splits and demos in that style, then, as the 2010s dawned, steered themselves into a more Noisegrind-ish style, mixing elements of Grindcore, Death Metal, Noise, Noise and more goddamn Noise. The style they play now is what I can only describe as a Grindcore version of Gnaw Their Tongues; just an insanely chaotic whirlwind of odd riffs, random soundbites and audio clips and distorted vocals blended all together to create an all around aura of freakishness that creeps you out and makes you paranoid while ravaging you all at once. It started with 2012’s Abject Horror, where their sound took this turn into the Lovecraftian abyss. I say ”Lovecraftian” because their lyrics even shifted from gore, piss, vomit, etc. to Loveraft-like Horror themes. Things got even weirder with Let Them In and Lurking in the Void Between Dreams; two other great albums that fuck with your mind even more with glitchy experimentation. Truly a unique style. This album, however, the one at hand, Sonic Shrapnel, is where it is perfected.
The previous few albums by these guys are as chaotic as they come but on this album, the chaos is much more controlled and more precise. Starting right out of the gate with Doors to Nowhere, the second you press play, you’re immediately thrown into a world of sonic hell and atmospheric violence that takes you on a loud, frightening hellride for the entirety of it’s brief 25-minute runtime. There’s also a good amount of versatility on this one. You have your more intense and blasty moments like in the opener and tracks like the noisy, freaky Eyes Between the Stars and An Entity Older Than Names, then there are the more mid-paced and groovier moments like Foaming Sewage and Inconceivable Horrors. Each track has their own feel to them, but the most common theme is the noise, soundbites and distortion that’s blended in with the music itself that creates this atmosphere of creepiness and paranoia that you can’t help but be entranced by as it brutalizes you with each passing track.
(Most ”current” pic of them I could find)
As for the music itself, it speaks for itself without relying too much on the noise and atmosphere. It’s indeed very intense Grindcore with influences of Brutal Death Metal, Punk and Electronica blended in. Even without the extra ridiculousness, this would still be a pretty damn good offering, but hey, if it works and makes it even better, use it! Other notable tracks are the groovy, but vicious A Vessel for the Discarnate, All Life Exhausted, Seas of Liquid Viscera (love that title) and closer, Silent and Swollen. Nothing too different about any of these tracks, but those are the ones I enjoyed (and was creeped out by) the most. Noisegrind isn’t for everyone, but I think these dudes know how to create something compelling enough to suck any Extreme Metal fan in and at least raise their curiosities enough to give it a shot, much like the bands mentioned in the opening paragraph. This is an excellent album that really perfects their style and makes them a unique force in the world of Grind. Loud, intense and fucking terrifying.
So, give this one a shot. Even if you’re iffy on noisy shit. I think there’s something for everyone here and it could be used as a good gateway into the noisier and more chaotic side of the spectrum. Just be forewarned, when you step into this word, you better be prepared for the nightmarish hellride that awaits you.
Until next time.