January 22, 2014

The Sustained Low 'C' of Richard Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra" - Lime/Meat

Written by Matt Hinch.

Those who know me know I have a bit of a man-crush on Toronto blackened doomcrustcore titans, uh, Titan. Their 2012 album Burn landed at #1 on my EOY list. Part of what I find so endearing about them is the vocals of James M. There's a raw, feral quality to them and with James you know the words behind the screams are intelligent. Luckily we don't have to wait for another Titan record to hear them. Enter The Sustained Low 'C' of Richard Strauss' "Also Sprach Zarathustra" (TSLCORSASZ) and Lime/Meat. In addition to James (also in Gates) the band features a number of Torontonian cohorts in guitarist Joel (Fires of Mammon), bassist John (Gates) and drummer Spencer (Eating Glass, Rising Crust).

"Lime" is blistering black metal with the bass rumbling away, confidently guiding the ship amidst the torrents of relentless percussion and searing USBM-style tremolos. James' rage is palpable as the Krallice-like wall of insanity swirls to soaring heights, building and building with trepidation. It all reaches for escape, reaches for peace. Intricate guitar work and emotional solos carry through the catharsis. The density of the track deflates more than explodes at its apex but it's far from a letdown. It's a release.

"Meat" is no less oppressive despite taking a different approach. Where "Lime" used breakneck speed to engage the listener, "Meat" takes a slower, more measured path. James still screams like legs are being cut off with a rusty butter knife while battery acid drips into the wound, but "Meat" is a doomy, heaving beast (with accompanying growled vocals). Its lumbering cadence condenses and expands moment to moment. As the pressure builds and the mood becomes more immediate, "post" guitar lines become prominent, perhaps symbolizing a fragility beneath the rage and hurt.

Lime/Meat may only be less than a quarter hour of music but that doesn't lessen its impact. TSLCORSASZ pack a dense array of doom and black metal into these two tracks. It's monstrously heavy and emotionally taxing. Repeated listens only make the experience more pleasurable. I'm not really sure what the name is supposed to mean either but that's inconsequential when the music is this good.

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

1 comment:
  1. Dat name. I swear I can hear the note while reading it. And also see a bit of 2001:Space Odyssey in my mind. YES I'M SOBER WHY DO YOU ASK?