I don’t know that I’ve heard such a powerfully heavy band with as much blood in the music as well as the vocal delivery as I have now listening to Unsane’s Visqueen. Hell, even their album covers are bloody. Following in a long line of self made tradition, this disc like their previous ones — dating back to 1991 — has a gory true life photograph of a dead body. It sets the tone for the album before you even have got a chance to take it out of its shrink wrap.
The auditory explosion that awaits inside is a car crash of Black Flag and Slayer. Appearing in NYC around the same time as Page Hamilton’s Helmet, Unsane play a darker shade of the same kind of metal. Their history is a dark as their music — including heroin overdoses, and physical violence that actually put vocalist Chris Spencer in a hospital bed. This is not a sunny band, but it’s a damn intense one.
Released as the introductory disc on Mike Patton’s Ipecac Recordings label, this is the metal record to pick up this year. “Last Man Standing,” “Against the Grain” and “This Stops At the River” are the three songs I’d recommend to a friend as a starter kit to this meal of an album.