Six years ago I conducted an experiment on some music that happened to be experimental to begin with. I took a song called “Scepters” from Skullgrid, the debut album by Behold the Arctopus, and slowed it down by a factor of three, extending its length from 3:43 to more than 11 minutes. It still sounded fast, with discernible rhythms and pulsing guitars. Remarkably, the blowtorch guitar solos still sounded like badass solos, which is a sign of just how fast Colin Marston and Mike Lerner were playing the original. Same thing with Charlie Zeleny’s drumming — it was so ridiculously fast in the original that even dragged down by a factor of three, it still sounded like what you’d expect to hear on a “normal” metal recording.
So I slowed the song down again, more than 10 times slower than the original, extending the length of “Scepters” to more than 41 minutes. Even at that ridiculously dragged-out pace, the song could still pass as music — albeit music with a demented, demons-on-the-loose quality, the kind of thing you’d risk your sanity to hear for 41 minutes straight.