Jun 262010


Me: Hey man, can I get a light?

Random Metalhead Outside a Club (“RM”):  Yeah, help yourself.

Me:  Thanks man.  (firing up a coffin nail) So, what did you think of that last band, Early Graves?

RM:  Mayhem, man! Just absolute fuckin’ mayhem!

Me:  Exactly!  It was like bein’ hit by a big fuckin’ truck, wakin’ up with tread marks embedded in your face.

RM:  Fuck yeah! That was some amazingly heavy shit. What the fuck were they playin’?

Me: All those songs were from their new album, Goner.

RM:  Good name for this kind of music, that’s for sure. It’s just, raw, eye-gouging, fuck-it-all shit. It’s like punk rock except with the heaviness dialed into the red zone.

Me: Yeah, I’m with you on that. Kinda reminded me of early Entombed, except faster, Entombed on a grindcore binge. Definitely heavy. That fuzzed-out bass is really up-front in the sound, and the fucking drummer just crushes his shit, absolutely fuckin’ berserk. But you’re right about the punk rock thing. It’s definitely got those punk rhythms and pacing.

RM:  But, you know, it wasn’t all just non-stop scorching. There was that one song that just started grinding down into a sludgy, crusty rhythm. That shit reminded me of this sweet car I used to have, the day the fucking engine just seized up on me. Sounded like the whole fuckin’ thing was coming apart and then it just stopped. Gaskets were just corroded to shit. I had to rebuild the motherfucker with money I didn’t have.

(more after the jump, including a song to hear . . .)

Me: Sucks, man. Yeah, that song was called “Mayday”. And right after they hit that slower, sledgehammer chugging part, they just let the guitar feedback finish the song for about a minute and a half. I thought my head was gonna explode. And fuck, the song right after that, the one called “Wraiths”? That was some more down-tempo, headbanging sludginess. Made me think of a shit-faced NFL lineman staggering through a packed club lookin’ for the fuckin’ bathroom.

RM: Yeah, like an NFL lineman would really come to a club like this — not nearly enough hot babes on display. But I know what you mean. Just kind of unstoppable, like some bruiser wading through a buncha metalhead geeks like us. But most of that shit was fast and out of control. That fuckin’ vocalist, you know his name?

Me: Dude’s name is Makh Daniels.

RM: Well, was he fuckin’ sick or what? I thought HIS head was gonna explode. Sounded like a dude who was bein’ burned alive and everyone was tryin’ to put out the fire with buckets of gasoline.

Me: No shit. Dude had amazing energy, just mauled with that voice of his. Fuck, my cigarette’s out. Can I borrow your lighter again?

RM: Yeah, here ya go. You know, I read someplace that the feds made all the cigarette companies use some kinda new papers that make the things go out if you’re not draggin’ on ’em. Supposed to cut down on fires when people go to sleep with their butts still smokin’. Probably some kinda chemicals in there that will give you cancer faster.

Me: Hey, don’t use the C word. Gives me the cold shivers. I’ve been smoking since I was 16. But yeah, if I talk too much, like I’m doin’ now, the fucking cigarettes do go out. What did you think about the guitars?

RM: I thought those two guitarists were hot-shit. Slammin’ riffs and squeals and lots of feedback. A couple of good solos too. Sounded like someone shooting acid in your face out of a garden hose.

Me: No shit. The solos really weren’t very long, but man they really burned. They had some good chainsaw chugging goin’ on, too, in a couple of those songs, like that one called “Trauma”. Dudes are really on top of their game.

RM: Totally. I just thought the whole thing was heavy as fuck. I really got off on it. Hey, it sounds like the next band is starting. I’m gonna go back inside and get a beer.

Me: Alright man. Hey, thanks for shootin’ the shit with me, and for the lights. I forgot which band is next, but they got a tough act to follow.

RM: That they do, that they do. You know, your fuckin’ smoke went out again.

Me: Well, fuck.


Okay, so that really wasn’t a transcript. I just thought I’d try a new way to write a review, and this particular album just cried out for the use of lots of four-letter words. There’s nothing subtle about Goner. It’s just a sonic steamroller. Trying to get all literate and intellectual about it would just degrade the music. Goner is a rough, raw, brutalizing assault, and it’s brilliant from beginning to end.

To be clear, I’ve never seen Early Graves play live. But I’m going to fix that. They’ll be on tour from now through early August with another hot-shit band from the Bay Area, The Funeral Pyre (we wrote about their new album here) — and that tour has a scheduled stop in Seattle. You can check out all the dates and places at the Early Graves MySpace page.  They’ve got the title track from Goner streaming there, too. Here’s another one for you to check out:

Early Graves: Trauma

P.S.: The online version of DECIBEL has just put up an interview with Early Graves guitarist Chris Brock, along with another track from Goner to hear. Check it out at this location.

  6 Responses to “EARLY GRAVES”

  1. Not bad, even if it’s not exactly my kind of material. I must say, the prospect of acid coming out of a garden hose doesn’t sound all that appealing, even if it might have helped a bit at work yesterday cleaning scale out of the cooling tower at work.

    And yes, the paper used is different. If you look, you should see slightly different colored bands on some, with an extra band if you have 100’s. However, each company seems to employ a different method – I see bands on the Marlboros but not on the Camel 99’s I have. Annoying to have one go out on you, but it also can be helpful if you’re like me and forget that you have one lit while you’re working on something. Saves on smokes wasted by letting them simply burn away.

  2. Now that you mention it, I can see those bands in the paper. It annoyed me at first, but now I like it for the same reason you mention — if you’re doing something else, they don’t just burn away while you’re neglecting them. I try not to think of what new chemicals the paper is introducing into my lungs, though I’m sure I’m completely fucked already from all the smoking I did before they changed the papers. (Glad you gave the music a shot, even though it’s not your usual thing. I’ve got to listen in small doses because it makes me want to run into things as hard as I can.)

    • Not to jump on the bandwagon, but you might wanna try one of those electronic smokes. I got one of the disposable ones and it seems to have helped reduce how much I go through in real smokes during the day. However, I’ve only been using if off and on; using it as my main fix would probably go a long way in reducing how much I smoke overall. Plus, if you only need a few drags or so, no wasting smokes and burning away bits of cash each time. Worth checking out and as long as you don’t get one of the expensive sets with rechargable cigs and cartridges to add, it’s not a huge investment to give ’em a try.

      • I probably should give those a try. Every now and then, I succeed in cutting back by chewing nicorette gum, but a box of those costs more than a box of doubloons from the Atlantic trench. Sheesh.

  3. Okay firstly, neither of you should be smoking! 😛 Secondly, what a great way to write a review lol. At first I was reading it and then later figured out it must be the review because of all the details. I am listening to Early Graves from their Myspace, sounds good so far. Definitely will look further into them. I like your buckets of gasoline comment about the vocalist haha. Thanks NCS.

    • Thank you! It really does mean a lot when people stop and take the time to say something nice about our feeble efforts.

      To be honest, it means a lot when anyone takes the time to say anything to us. I even got a little thrill when someone posted a comment on a different post yesterday that ended with “Pull your head out of your ass, fuckface.” (Actually, I think he was probably responding to another comment. Probably.)

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