Grizzlor – ‘Destructoid’

By Jay Hampshire

‘Destructoid’, the new LP from New Haven noise trio Grizzlor, is as rough, raw and rugged as if the band were your next door neighbours, playing it unsociably loud at 2am right next to your bedroom. Full of bouncy, swaggering rhythms and a willful disregard of standard tropes, the eleven tracks couple the confrontational urgency of garage grunge with the experimentation of noise rock.

‘Fruitloopville’ kicks in with an artificial groaning vocal before the ballsy, bouncing chords barge in. It’s all lo-fi, cocky strut and throaty shouts, dropping into fat bass and whining, scraping guitars before being dumped by an unceremonious ending. ‘House In The Woods’ reels and lurches like a drunk uncle, reverb drenched groaning vocals and beefy drums sitting uneasily atop a bloated amble pierced through by scratchy tremolo guitars.
‘Tooth Pain’ conjures rampant d-beat punk drive, an infectious head banger with tonnes of pace frantically galloping away, only slightly dampened by immersion breaking, flat lyricism. ‘Miserable Jerk’ slows things down with stomping drums and threateningly weighty chords before ‘Stupid Shit’ throws out some snarling swagger and angsty shouts.

‘Too Many People’ throws in a dash of blues, drenched with massive cymbal splash and juddering guitars that protest amid flurries of bass fills. ‘Fighting Aliens With No Gravity’ peppers you with atonality and skittering riffs until ‘Wade’s Notes’ unsettles with an altered vocal sample and flatulent bass. By the time you hit ‘Feeling Like Shit’ things are getting altogether too familiar – there’s punchy riffing and raging shouts that rail with a pleasing catharsis, but haven’t we had this already?

‘Simulation’ peps things up by dialling to a hard edged hard rock-style riff, descending in a spiral with some breathless, exhausted vocals into throbbing electronic noise, a contender for best track on the record. ‘Quit And Die’ seems to do just that, providing another bouncing, angry riff and an abrupt end without supplying anything drastically different.

Grizzlor don’t do anything particularly wrong with ‘Destructoid’. The riffs are chunky, the delivery solid and groove laden, the recording pleasingly rough around the edges. There’s just an unfortunate lack of distinction on the record. The tracks fail to really distinguish themselves from the eleven on display, and the album as a whole struggles to break the surface in a scene increasingly saturated with quality acts. It’s solid, workmanlike noise rock, but it’s not doing much in the way of innovation. But then, does everything really need to?

JAY HAMPSHIRE

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