Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Noisear - Subvert The Dominant Paradigm

Subvert The Dominant Paradigm
Relapse Records

When it comes to grindcore bands, you can’t go past Relapse Records’ ability to consistently deliver the goods with just about every signing they’ve offered up. And as expected, the label’s latest signing of Albuquerque (New Mexico) outfit Noisear maintains the high standard we’ve come to expect.
Noisear (Who comprise of vocalist Alex Lucero, Ex-Gridlink/Kill The Client/Enemies Of Inertia guitarist/vocalist Dorian Rainwater, guitarist Thomas Romero, bassist/vocalist Joe Tapia and Kill The Client/Phobia/Gridlink/Enemies Of Inertia drummer Brian Fajardo) are no strangers to the underground grindcore scene, with a string of split E.P.’s, vinyl only releases and one full length release (2008’s ‘Pyroclastic Annihilation’) to their name - all of which have been met with high acclaim. And rightfully so too, as Noisear is easily one of the more thought provoking and forward thinking acts within the grindcore scene. And if any evidence was needed to prove this point, one only needs to listen to their latest effort ‘Subvert The Dominant Paradigm’.
Unlike a lot of grindcore acts who favour a thicker and muddier sound, the production on ‘Subvert The Dominant Paradigm’ is quite crisp and clear, which immediately gives Noisear a sound that separates the band from others, and also gives the thirty tracks on the album an edge that many grindcore albums lack. Another important factor that makes this album enjoyable is the band’s vast array of riffs on offer, and their willingness to vary the tempo (Regardless of how slight) from one track to the next. This combined duality shown throughout the album allows the band to showcase their technical proficiency, as well as allow the listener to grab on to the more groove based moments on the album, without losing any of the core ingredients that make up the traditional grindcore sound.
In terms of highlights, selecting out individual stand out moments within ‘Subvert The Dominant Paradigm’ is somewhat of a challenge given the quality of material on offer. But at a push, tracks such as chaotic opener ‘Breaking Bad At The Mulberry’ (Which features some killer drumming from Fajardo), the ever-shifting ‘Gestapolis’, the deathly grind of ‘Inevitable Extinction’, the catchy ‘Information Highway To Hell’, ‘Slave’, the Brujeria-like Spanish sung ‘Almas Por El Infierno’ (Which translates to ‘Souls Of Hell’), ‘Contaminant Of The Earth’ and Napalm Death-like blast of ‘The Blackened Sea’ stands out as definite favourites.
The only other track worthy of singling out is the appropriately titled ‘Noisearuption’ that finishes up the album. At twenty minutes long, and comprised solely of a short introductory rant (Courtesy of Peet Koff) and a continual wave of noise effects (With contributions from Jay Randall of Agoraphobic Nosebleed/Bastard Noise fame), ‘Noisearuption’ isn’t going to appeal to many, let alone get many repeat listens. But for those with an ear for the more avant-garde side of things, the track certainly does have a hypnotic groove beneath its noisy exterior.
‘Subvert The Dominant Paradigm’ is a great addition to the grindcore scene, and an album that’s sure to garnish plenty of praise for Noisear. All in all, this is one must have album for grind fans.

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© Justin Donnelly