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SOUNDING Maxes Out on “Trepanation” (Album Premiere)

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The further Myspace recedes into the past, the less any part of that era makes sense. Launched before social media got its shit together, Myspace was a hodgepodge of functions that had little to do with each other. It was simultaneously a diary/entry blog, a music player à la PureVolume, a chat forum (shout-out to The Most Pit), and a barbaric way to rank your friends for social status. On top of that, its user-friendly approach to page design resulted in a truly hideous mess of widgets, graphics, and page templates that would take forever to load and were often unnavigable. Even worse, the site’s music player, which allowed people to select their own personalized playlists from the site’s library, would autoplay. During the peak of Myspace’s popularity, innocently clicking on the profile of some scenester cutie could launch you into a nightmare of sparkling HTML soundtracked by a blistering, obnoxious grindcore blasting from a music player buried deep within broken widgets.

(Modern social media has resolved a lot of these issues, resulting in a less garish, bloodless experience, where the worst you have to worry about is having all of your data sold to corporate interests and coming face to face with Nazi propoganda. Huh, maybe Myspace wasn’t so bad after all).

Appropriately, the kind of music that would accompany these neon hellscapes was a strain of grind halfway between overstimulated and overstimulating. Traditionally, grindcore operates at the same gut-level rumble as the rest of extreme metal and hardcore, just with significantly faster delivery. Myspace grindon the other hand felt like sticking a fork into an electrical outlet. Inspired by cutting edge bands like Discordance Axis, The Dillinger Escape Plan’s mathy hardcore, and the wacky noise freakouts of Daughters, Myspace grind was an intentionally headache inducing whirlwind of high-pitched dissonance.

It’s not too surprising that this style was not beloved by the metal audience, especially considering its popularity with the “white-belt scene kid” crowd. However, to water down a Dark Angel record, time does heal some wounds. Metal seems more open to sounds on the fringe of listenability. Death metal now celebrates bands as far ranging as Ulcerate and Pyrrhon that incorporate skronk and sickening disharmony liberally, and acts like Full of Hell and Code Orange that incorporate harsh noise directly into their live performances. Maybe it’s time to give the sound of Myspace grind another shot, without the Top Eight politics.

SOUNDING certainly think so. Their new album, Trepanation barely lasts the length of a smoke break, but it’ll give you a serious buzz. Every instrument here is bristling with distortion and played at maximum velocity. SOUNDING reduce the human voice to radio static, while their riffs slip and slide in and out of tonality with reckless abandon. Normally for a band this unhinged, there’s at least one element holding the chaos together, anchoring you while the rest of the band takes turns kicking your legs out from under you.

Here, there is no musical good cop: every sound is coming to get you. The mechanized drums are about as close as you get, but even their uniformity becomes disturbing soon enough. Listen to how “Jesus Junkies” only take a matter of seconds before each instrument starts pulling in a different direction. Even the vocals get thrown wildly across the mix. SOUNDING is a shot of acidic espresso, the perfect score to a high speed, full-on freak-out.

Stream Trepanation before its release tomorrow via Dark Trail below. You can follow SOUNDING on Facebook here.

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