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He Whose Ox is Gored – ‘Paralyzer’ (EP Premiere)

ParalyzerCover

Laid out on paper, the elements of He Whose Ox Is Gored seem like a surefire recipe for self-indulgence. But the Seattle quartet manages to combine polyrhythmic percussion, odd timings, and unusual structures with hypnotizing ether and primal yawps — all while keeping its songs lean and concise. The band tickles every part of the brain, from the lizard portion to the part that gravitates toward elegant mathematics.

The latest He Whose Ox Is Gored 7”, Paralyzer, consists of the title track, recorded by the legendary Jack Endino (Soundgarden, Nirvana, Windhand, Zeke, High On Fire, and many others) as part of a Converse Rubber Tracks Session, and two songs from 2014’s Rumors EP that have been remixed by fellow Seattleites (and maniacs), Newaxeyes.

“Paralyzer” effortlessly dances in the sludgy calculus of Intronaut. As increasing amounts of metal bands flirt with syncopation and contortionist rhythms, He Whose Ox Is Gored is one of the few that do so while inviting the listener in with catchiness and grooves. The video for “Paralyzer” matches those sounds with disorienting images of mechanized factories and singer/synth architect Lisa Mungo yelling to the viewer.

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With its newfound vibe of glitchy antagonism, Newaxeyes’ mix of “Buried Twice” sounds like the track has been chewed up and spit out by Death Grips. The original version of “Void Assault” is stegosaurus prog, whereas the Paralyzer remix has been dissected and then boiled into a gaseous state. Far from a rehashing of old material, Paralyzer finds He Whose Ox Is Gored deconstructing itself.

-J.J. Anselmi

Paralyzer is available on June 16 via Void Assault Records.Order it here. Follow He Whose Ox is Gored on Facebook.

J.J. Anselmi is the author of ’Heavy: A Memoir of Wyoming, BMX, Drugs, and Heavy Fucking Music’, and he plays drums in the post-doom band Former Worlds.

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