In the Grips of the Light (Secretly Canadian)

Calling Racebannon abrasive is like saying piranhas like to tickle bloody flesh. The Indiana noisefuck collective aggressively corrodes the face of grindcore, metal, and punk, turning their voices and instruments into sharp objects that gut rock from the inside out. Frontman Mike Anderson vacillates between a shrill, feral growl and shaky, man-about-to-lose-his-shit breakdowns -- and when he does actually sing, he still sounds borderline panicky, his bilious words coughed up like a lung. The music egging Anderson on is improvised and experimental, coming from a Melvins/Locust/Jesus Lizard hive where grinding white theremin noise gets spiked by jagged melodies, buzzsaw guitars, intense squalls of feedback, and industrial scratching and screeching. What sounds like possible sonic masturbation material for dudes chained in dark basements, though, is kept on course by plodding, heavy bass rhythms that keep In the Grips of the Light eerily riveting from start to finish. Racebannon might not have the perfect soundtrack for stressful occasions like root canals, back-alley amputations, or dinner parties, but Light will still leave your fucking brains on a wall.


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