Elitist - _Fear in a Handful of Dust_
(Season of Mist, 2011)
by: Dan Lake (8 out of 10)
Ffff...

Uuuuuuuhhh...

Ck.

Has anybody ever ground up pissed-off hardcore noise and synapse-slowing death/doom tempo before into such a potent sausage of punishment? (A note to the hydrocephalic masses now clamoring to use Sausage of Punishment to title their half-baked pornogrind abomination: you're welcome.) On _Fear in a Handful of Dust_, Elitist announce themselves as members of that growing crop of heavy bands that draw characteristics from whatever styles best complement the vibe they're producing. Their debut full-length, released by the reliably eclectic Season of Mist, comes off as a flailing swarm of nail-spiked rail tie clubs; the results are akin to a less artsy (and longwinded) Cleric, or pouring a swampy muck a lá Portal over the megaloads of violence delivered by Gaza and Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire. Sometimes the songs' movement is carried forward by Nick Parks' fill-frenzied drumming or a furious guitar riff, and sometimes everything else stills and a Guinness-thick bass line digs through the gristly crust of distortion. Vocals trend toward a phlegmy midrange yell, though Josh Greene does occasionally buckle down into a deep death rumble or let loose with an agonized scream.

_Fear_ takes less than 35 minutes to state its case, but even so, it's an exhausting listen. The fast parts beat frantically against a wall of sonic grime, and there's no space in the elastic, crawling slow parts to rest. The squealing transitional feedback between songs feels lifted right out of a Converge album, but it's hard to fault the band when it works so well. In all, the pacing of the disc is perfect for an enraged Tuesday afternoon, a disgusting Saturday morning, or a just-plain-angry Thursday tea time. Right for any day of the week, really.

RaaaaaAAAAHHHH!

Contact: http://elitistpdx.blogspot.com/

(article published 12/2/2012)


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