November 10, 2010

LEATHER - "Anchorite" 7inch (Caesar Cuts Records)

  I got this from John at Caesar Cuts, with a note saying "There's dudes from Fresh Meat/Black Tar in this band" naturally I was severely stoked to get this on the turntable and get rolling.Hot damn!The first 30 seconds of Inanna Altar, displayed the type of awesome, post-hardcore-but-not tactics that will keep acts like Ink & Dagger, Drive Like Jehu, and the more recent Pissed Jeans, in constant rotation for the rest of my life.Heavy, ugly, and jagged riffing is thrown into your face like broken glass in a street fight.The drumming is equally as unpleasant, catapulting the scratchy guitar beatings over the gurgling bass machine and sharp feedback, landing somewhere in the thick of a brash vocal assault.Early-nineties heaviness reigns supreme in Leather's world, and you will hear more than a enough of your Gravity, Initial, and AmRep favorites in this bulky EP.
  At times Agran's voice is so insanely similar to Sean McCabe's beloved nasal-dripped snarl, that you will swear this record is some lost Ink & Dagger b-side, and that is a compliment, indeed.But it's not a total rip, not at all.Agran's got this more of a controlled, high-pitched howl that cracks at times, and has a sort of squeaky displacement to it, and slips into a raspy snarl here and there.It's actually quite a refreshing attribute, considering the majority of bands doing this sort of thing continue to take the path of the typical low, dry-throaty growl, and drive it right into the ground. The four songs that make up Anchorite are short, blown-out blazers, that are pretty much mauled to pieces in just under two minutes, with the exception Prince of the Salon, the tamest lion of the pack.But, even this one is delivered with such immediacy and pull, that it flashes by just as fast and hard as the others.
  The lyrics are direct and brutally honest, each track spins a short, bittersweet tale of ugly and spiteful plots.Nothing too cryptic is going on here, and it's a good thing too.The vocals are well placed, and reasonably coherent for the most part, keeping the drive of their raw approach very melodic and tuneful.A proper introduction to this relatively new band, and I'm sure we will be hearing lots more from them.Fingers crossed.Check out their demo tape, if you can find it.

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