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Tuesday, 1 March 2011

No Jazz, Just Grind! (Dead Neanderthals, 2 Full Lengths)

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Saxophone is the last instrument I would ever expect to see in Grindcore, but now thanks to Dead Neanderthals the instrument has now made its way into my favorite genre of music. I discovered the band while mindlessly browsing the web and remember laughing after the first listen, but being a fan of such experimental and avant garde(even in my grindcore) I decided to contact the band directly and ask if a review was acceptable. The band accepted and mailed me their two full length releases, which to my surprise when receiving them were two 3 inch CD's, one of which came with a small and hilarious poster. Along with my CD's came a small typed letter providing some information on the band, here is the biography included:

"Dead Neanderthals is officially the coolest band in the Nijmegen area, with two full-length releases to their name in only six months time. It's always thought that the second CD is the hardest to make, so we did it in one day. Only two members in the band, no guitar player, just sax and drums. We single-handedly revived the ancient tradition of including a poster in a mini CD."

The first release is a self-titled album, while their second release is titled The V-Shaped Position. The band as mentioned above is completely absent of guitar and is purely instrumental, no vocals at all. Both albums contain psychotic blastbeats grinding to earsplitting high sax notes accompanied with lower octave parts, to say this guy blows is an understatement. The first release is not as insane or fast but contains more odd time signatures and still includes awesome blasts. The fact that this band can pull off the fusion of these two instruments so smoothly is an accomplishment on its own. A lot of the sax parts are really catchy too, my favorite track on the self-titled album was definitely Cannibal Ambush. The V-Shaped Position picks up the pace a little more while also having slightly better production. I enjoyed this record more due to its ferocity and weird vibe you get from hearing the insane solos, as a whole I can say that it is far more Grindcore oriented as well, a major plus. With the second album being as beautifully crafted as it is, I do not really have anything negative to say apart from the absence of Vocals.

Dead Neanderthals is an amazing band but in every song I can really picture a combination of vocals reminiscent to bands like Discordance Axis or Insect Warfare, or if they wanted to flip the script completely they could throw in some shrieks similar to Bathtub Shitter. Bottom line is that this band rules, but without vocals eventually coming in I think a lot of people will get bored or annoyed with the pure saxophone howling and bellowing as it requires some sort of contrast. Regardless, I highly enjoy the band already and as long as they keep releasing good material like this then I will continue to support them. Also, how cool is it to that they came out with two full lengths from the start? I've always loved it when bands skipped the whole EP/Demo route and kicked out a sick release right from the beginning. You owe it to yourself to check this band out, don't take it so serious and just have fun with it, Dead Neanderthals provide us with a good time.