Music Reviews

Napalm Death

Enemy of the Music Business


And the proverbial bomb has been dropped. As begrudging as I may be toward Napalm Death’s last two albums, Inside the Torn Apart and Words From the Exit Wound (particularly the latter, even in this publication), they are by no means bad records, just considerably bland ones, and certainly not on par with the legendary grind troupe’s characteristically sterling standards. So, with the arrival of Enemy of the Music Business on these American shores, after having been out in Europe (on Dreamcatcher) for almost a year now, Napalm Death’s latest full-length makes the aforementioned ones look clumsy • and this one flat-out devastating • by comparison. More or less a smorgasbord of Death’s envelope-pushing work of the earlier half of the ’90s (basically, the arrival of drummer/human-tornado Danny Herrera in ‘92), Enemy of the Music Business throttles along to a framework akin to Utopia Banished • effortlessly and memorably shifting back and forth from Discharge-derived crust-punk and unhinged blastbeat paralysis (and always heavy as hell, natch) • with a slight whiff of Fear, Emptiness, Despair’s dissonant artiness, being more of an integration than an overriding factor, and even the hook-laden anthemics of Diatribes can be witnessed here and there (best example: fist-puncher “Necessary Evil”). Notwithstanding their huge falling-out with Earache and the residual bile lacing the album’s lyrics, really, any further verbiage would underscore the fact that, doubtless, Enemy of the Music Business is Napalm Death’s most relevant work in many years, and points toward a new strain of vitality for the future. Boom.

Spitfire, 101 Bay Ave., Hicksville, NY 11801;

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