Before we get into the review, this is an interesting aside. Vinyl Cape's vocalist BRZOWSKI and I have some weird things in common. We share a similar group of friends and at one time in the early 2000's we were both employed at the same high school, teaching as substitutes for the SAME art class.
As small as the world is, we've never met and I've never actually listened to any of his projects. So when I received the link yesterday, I was going into this completely blind yet familiar. Does that make sense?
This album almost works as a stream of consciousness. Vinyl Cape cast a wide net and in the process drag along with it sounds that seem to work together no matter how alien they are to each other. While not nearly as dark or referential as Ill Bill's Hour of Reprisal or Dalek's Absence, this album could definitely fit on the same shelf.
As a guy who spends the very little spare time my schedule allows to watch videos about abandoned places and dead malls, the beautiful layer of dust and what's forgotten is new again-esque use of distorted riffs on tracks like Cthonic Youth and in the grandiose moments of Barren Orchard would make for a great soundtrack to those type of visuals. Speaking of Barren Orchard, the little creepy black metal vocals wedged into the track totally bring back my love for the tone of early Mushroomhead albums.
Let's cut to the track that I've listened to the most, Small Hours. There is a total Mike Patton vibe going on here. I enjoy that it is the first track on the album that doesn't incorporate the hip hop vocals. The organ and distorted riffs set the table as this is a beast of a tune that creeps out of a cavernous tomb.
Roll over Cerberus returns to the Everlast "Whitey Ford" style hip hop that combines a slight sprinkling of southern music along with a "shake your ass slowly to the beat" groove. The title track has a very epic intro that transitions into a real amalgamation of hip hop meets rock soaked in a jack daniels molotov cocktail. Something like this isn't written by someone who doesn't live on a steady diet of Johnny Cash albums and underground hip hop albums.
The most surprising track on the album is it's last, The Severed Head of John The Baptist. The vibe lives somewhere between the sonic doom of Monster Magnet and the raw intensity of early sabbath. It's a grand send off for the listener who's just been on one hell of a ride.
I make an effort not to grade albums but to express how the listening experience of the album affected me. For me this is an album I'd want to make myself. This isn't a pop record nor is it totally an artsy album either. If you enjoy a wide range of music, you're gonna dig the shit out of this album and like me quickly listen to my favorite tracks immediately after the first spin. If you're range is strictly in metal you'll want to skip around the album but I can assure you there is plenty for you to still enjoy. Overall this is an album that could be a great gateway drug into opening your mind to a world where hip hop mingles with metal and doom on the same beautiful and demented landscape.
Check out a track or maybe preorder the cd or digital download at http://vinylcape.bandcamp.com/