This release represents two phenomena that fascinate me: non-metal side projects from metal dudes, and self-contained pocket scenes. The label in question, Tofu Carnage, is an in-house operation. It came into existence last year as a means for the Dallas sludge/black metal band Dead To a Dying World to release their own material. (Their excellent debut is available for free streaming and download on Tofu Carnage’s Bandcamp.

Since then, Tofu Carnage has gone about releasing music by increasingly strange spinoff bands—Akkolyte, a Naked City-styled jazzgrind act featuring DTADW drummer Stefan Gonzalez, and now Unconscious Collective. “Collective” is an apt term. This band features Gonzales on drums and vibraphone, Gregg Prickett (also of DTADW) on guitar, and Aaron Gonzalez (also of Akkolyte) on bass, but has played host to countless guest musicians.

Unconscious Collective steps over the blurry metal/jazz line drawn by Akkolyte into hazy fusion territory. This material isn’t broken up into ‘songs’ as much as it’s divvied up into movements. Improvisation rules the day; the band recorded this material live, and it shows. Still, as with Last Exit or Secret Chiefs 3, metal abusiveness creeps in through unexpected portals: sinister tonalities and painful noise squalls.

You can order Unconscious Collective on double LP at the link below, and Tofu Carnage has another release coming out next month—a posthumous LP from the San Antonio band Ecocide. I’m excited to hear their first release from outside the collective.

— Doug Moore

Unconscious Collective - "Gemini Croquet"

Unconscious Collective - "Tranquiladora Alborotadora"

Unconscious Collective - "Cis-Lunar Cloudburst"

Unconscious Collective - "Molesting Electric Walter"

Unconscious Collective - "Funeralis Pachydermis"

Unconscious Collective - "Ink Portraits in the Key of Cephalopod"

Unconscious Collective - "Peneteka"


Tofu Carnage Records (Vinyl)

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