Friday, March 8, 2013

Ramlord- "Crippled Minds, Sundered Wisdom" LP (Hypaethral Records)

Some of you may remember Ramlord as that band I once used the word "crushing" to describe too many times. Some of you may also remember that I think "crushing" is an awesome thing that doesn't happen enough in the reviews I write. Specializing in lo-fi black metal often leaves me with a lack of solid headbanging, skull-crushing tunes. Luckily Ramlord exist so that I may write about their boozy, chaotic blackened crust madness and get my daily recommended dose of crushing. To say that this new album is a positive expansion on the material presented on their split with Cara Neir is an understatement, and I'm pretty stoked on it.

I often feel the need to write from the perspective of an educated, intelligent, well-spoken individual, but with music this raw, I feel that flowery speech would detract from just how ferocious this is. Listening to this takes me back to the days when I hung out at basement shows and drank as much cheap beer and whiskey as I could before burrito cravings set in. The difference here is that Ramlord don't seem intent on creating fun for their listeners so much as they are hellbent on imparting bleak fury. I'm nodding my head along while I listen to the album, but I'm also kinda stuck on the fact that I'm going to die one day. All the lyrics seem to lead me back to the impermanence of mortality and the futility of believing in something beyond this world. It makes me just want to dig into the music all the more, clinging to every hideous moment because this music itself is bursting with life, almost in defiance of death. The frantic pace of the music, the harshness and humanity of the vocals, the energy creates a sort of pessimistic beauty. Another thing that really works for this is Ramlord's complete lack of commitment to any one niche within the greater genres of crust, metal, or whatever else you'd call their music. Thirty-second facemelters like "Enslaved" exist in some sort of twisted harmony with the eight-minute closing nightmare of "Extinction of Clairvoyance (Part Two)," which is a continuation of the aforementioned split with Cara Neir. This whole album gives me way too much to digest, but I can say with complete sincerity that I'm okay with a bit of sonic uneasiness. I've always been into discomfort and struggle in music, so the massive quantity of chaotic and cathartic experience here gives me something hearty to sink my teeth into.

So this slab of viciousness has already been available for digital download for about a month, but I'm a total slacker. The benefit of me not posting this until now is that if you're super cool and preorder the record (for a measly fifteen bucks), you've only got to wait about a month for it to ship out. So what are you waiting for? You could have this album for free, or you can be one of only 100 awesome individuals to own this depressing mess on vinyl. I'm part of the second group; will you join me?

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