Review: Looking for an Answer – Eterno Treblinka
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I've been looking for a grindcore answer for a while. The question is "Where did the feeling go?" By feeling, I mean the burly, dirty low end of Terrorizer's World Downfall, Assück's Misery Index, the first Brutal Truth record, and pre-death metal Napalm Death. I've long missed that "bruising ground fight" vibe, and what's been offered in recent years as grindcore has lacked it. That's mostly been, to analogize to American football, either poncy air attacks (cleaned-up, "technical" grind) or skinny dudes running option plays (powerviolence). I want "three yards and a cloud of dust" - and by Woody Hayes' ghost, Looking for an Answer's got it.
At this point, I'm not sure how effective grindcore is for anything. All the left-wing lyrics in the world won't change anyone's mind, especially when fans download albums left and right without lyrics. And 17 one- to two-minute songs - let's not kid ourselves. We can't tell them apart. Outside the live setting - where it can be the most volatile, exhilarating form of heavy music - is grindcore really just ambient music with certain stylistic conventions (sliding riffs, short songs, etc.)? Can any grindcore fan actually name all the songs of any grindcore album from memory? For better or worse, sound is the only thing that matters.
But maybe the sound still matters a lot. Maybe as long as humans keep screwing up the earth and themselves, there's a place for discontent. Maybe it's OK for a long-dormant thread to be revived, particularly in an unlikely place like Spain, Looking for an Answer's home. Maybe musicians should express protest in their native languages, as this band does. Maybe it's OK for our short attention spans to consume input geared towards it, because some message is better than no message. (I dream of the world losing all power sources and humans having to regain their attention spans. People excuse their behavior so easily now with "I have a short attention span". It's disgusting.)
Looking for an Answer reflect the times. Times are bruising. Every cent matters, and every day is a struggle. It's the early '90s again, whether it be the 20th or 19th century. Shit is fucked up, industrialization grinds the poor into dust, and some people are pissed off. Thankfully they don't ask for donations. Instead they give to us, con riffs fuertes y blastbeats mortiferos. We're blessed that people still come together to speak out this way. The fight rages on.
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