You Need to Hear: Antigama

28 May

Awesome music, rubbish imagery. If you can’t have both, it’s best to have it that way round.

Lean and spry, wiry and angular as all fuck, Antigama surgically devastate your eardrums with hail upon hail of viciously precise blows.

I can’t quite believe I was oblivious to their idiosyncratic math-grind assault until last week. Now I can’t go a day without feasting on their really rather groovy lightspeed-tom-roll-drenched skronk.

This month these mentalist Poles released their first record for three years, Stop the Chaos.

Positive coverage of this new EP that mentioned MDG favourites Trap Them and Pig Destroyer sent me scurrying to 2009 full-length The Warning.

Mind: blown.

The Warning has way more notes and free jazz dissonance than I usually tolerate. Spastic time changes don’t typically impress me. I have no time for Dillinger Escape Plan, Botch et al.

But ooh-wah, this shit is seriously funkeh. It’s also like having your earholes stabbed and sandpapered, brain sucked out with a vacuum cleaner and electrodes taped to your balls, let us not forget.

But it’s also damn rocking. Want proof? Check out Lost Skull.

Did I not tell you? Pantera-gone-grind with pinch harmonics and awesome cartoonish tom-rolls. Outrageously groovy and yet still skronktastic.

That’s not even mentioning the increasingly bonkers ambient interludes and epic electronic closer Black Planet (7 minutes long! On a grind album! I know!).

So how does the new EP stack up?

What immediately jumps out to this recent initiate is that returning vocalist Lucasz is way more of a traditional grind/metal throat compared to the more hardcore-influenced vocals on Warning.

Fine if you like that sort of thing, s’pose, but it appeals a little less personally.

The blasts of abrasive skronk and shuddering, jittering drums remain and continue to flay the skin from your bones in creative ways.

In the vein of Genghis Tron, there’s confident use of samples and electronics that seamlessly add texture to the violence.

It just doesn’t seem quite as serpentine and densely detailed as The Warning.

Still, given half the band’s personnel has changed since their last outing (there’s a new sticksman too), Stop the Chaos is pretty bloody good and retains much of what makes the band so exciting.

Intricate Trap is my highlight as it strikes the best balance of run-you-over grind warfare, jazz squee, octopus drumming and proper hip-shaking riffage.

Also love closer The End, another space-jam to soothe those ringing ears.

And guess what? If you like all this, there’s a whole back catalogue of albums, EPs and splits (including one with Pig Destroyer!) to sink your teeth into.

4 Responses to “You Need to Hear: Antigama”

  1. MaxR May 29, 2012 at 4:07 am #

    Good to have you back Sir, and in such a fine form.

    You can find the The Warning (and Resonance) on their Relapse Bandcamp page:

  2. hhbrady May 31, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

    The cover looks like an Activision game for the Atari 2600, circa 1984.

  3. Kuz May 31, 2012 at 8:53 pm #

    Aww, thanks chaps.

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