Most records sound like records. They have intros, songs, interludes, and so on. Imbroglio‘s debut, The Oncoming Swarm (The Path Less Traveled, 2009), has such ingredients. But it’s not really a record so much as the sound of a bad day. Normally, this is not a good thing. I do not like hearing friends complain about bad days. Then again, my friends don’t come down-tuned with blastbeats. Sorry, friends. Sometimes records are better than people.

Butterfly Children

If I had produced this one, it would have been diminished. I would have deleted its intro, two interludes, and noise outro. It would have been a 17-minute EP, not a 32-minute something-between-an-EP-and-LP. I generally hate intros and interludes, but these work. The industrial ambience and nude clean tones ooze anxiety. I would have made just Side A of My War. Imbroglio adds Side B.

This lends depth to a normally shallow sound – abrasive, angular hardcore with metal leanings. Imbroglio is one of the angriest bands I’ve ever heard, along the lines of Gaza and early Ion Dissonance. (This is unsurprising given band members’ connections to Architect, another angry outfit.) Shuddering accents buffet high and low end scrapings. The vocals could strip paint. Hovering above is a black cloud. The interludes are deceptive breathers. They’re suckers’ rallies, upticks in Sisyphean days. Life only lets you get back up so it can beat you down again. The beating never felt so good.

– Cosmo Lee

eMusic (MP3)
Amazon (MP3)
Interpunk (CD)
The Path Less Traveled (CD)

To help Imbroglio book its May/June tour, go here.