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Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Los Crustaceos / Vacuum split

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If I had been able to, I would have offered a review here of Los Crustaceos' self titled EP. Unfortunately of the three links that Cloromiro, the vocalist, sent me, this was the only one which worked. What we have here though is a fine slab of raw, angry powerviolence at its best. So, instead i'll simply review Los Crustaceos' side of this split, and you can all make do with that until i get hold of a copy of the EP. This split is more than enough to keep you happy until then though, and i'll tell you why.

Los Crustaceos formed in the distant nation of Chile in 2008. They rehearsed once and stuck a video on youtube, then went straight in for the jugular with a show with Czech band Onanizer. After this show, Cloromiro states, the band decided to go in a more Powerviolence direction, having previously been more of a thrashcore outfit. Along with Vacuum and RichardHarrison, they began playing vicious powerviolence with a no-holds-barred rawness that is equal to any powerviolence emanating from the states or Europe. Their lyrics and their imagery do not, as far as i can tell, represent their views - the band are vegans and have appeared at an animal liberation rally. However, Cloromiro tells me their lyrics are sarcastic in nature and reflect rather nihilistic points of view.

With a ripping punk guitar sound that slices through the psychotic yelling like a wall of distortion, the songs are short frantic bursts of power, a chaotic and very angry style. The speed of the playing is incredible, tidy neat little blasts perfectly sculpted into structures slightly more complex than your average powerviolence band. The vocals slip between high screeching and a more hardcore style of yelling/shouting, seamlessly blending into the noise of the overall piece. Consisting of simply a drummer, guitarist and vocalist, the overall sound is an overwhelming wave of brutality that feels like getting punched in the face, to put it lightly. They carry a raw anger which seems to be lacking in a lot of contemporary powerviolence, but they seem to manage to keep the songs fresh and interesting with varied riffs and structures that would be considered slightly more complex than say, Dropdead, for example. They remind me more of Plutocracy, but whereas with Plutocracy they are hard to call a powerviolence band, these slip into the genre with ease. This band also use a lot of samples in their music, and even have a cheeky reference to Plutocracy with a hip-hop outro. They have a small following within Chile, and have played throughout the country in both the north and south. However, despite having a wide and varied punk/hardcore scene, Los Crustaceos are one of the only bands in Chile taking it to the next level with this kind of stuff.

The only problem, if there is one, is that this is a relatively small split. The songs are short, and Los crustaceos' side of this split is no longer than five minutes long, which is a real shame because it leaves you wanting more. A whole lot more! As of yet they have only released this split, a live split with another band, and their self titled EP. The self titled EP is hard to find but the live split is available on numerous blogs. Luckily they have more plans - a split with fellow Chileans RichardHarrison, and a 5-way split with some fastcore bands. But still, this split could have done with more material from both bands - and especially Los Crustaceos. They could have easily had double the amount of songs here, and it still would have been short enough to leave you wanting more. Undoubtedly, these will be a band to watch out for on the international scene, as they may be tearing it up someplace near you soon if they carry on in this way. Overall, this is a quality piece of Powerviolence perfection, solid in every way except length. Definately one of the better powerviolence bands i've heard in the past few years, Los Crustaceos are gonna blow your mind if you give them the chance.