Bathtub Shitter

Bathtub Shitter

Bathtub Shitter

Dancehall Grind

Super Hit Jam

Just when you think that an anarchic Japanese grindcore outfit would take a concept like “musical progression” out back and beat it soundly with large sticks, along comes their newest offering, Dancehall Grind. It’s a fucking shocker, much in the way their last album, Lifetime Shitlist jolted me in terms of its sheer demented fun. But the Bathtub Shitter of Dancehall Grind is a far different beast, technical and tighter, somewhere between Brutal Truth and Mr. Bungle, a very proficient grind outfit who throws in thrash mega-riffs alongside bratty avant-spikiness. Songs are longer, arrangements are given more time to stretch and breathe — more innovative. This approach finds its apogee in Pink Floyd-length blockbuster “Rest In Piss” which is full-on blackhearted death/prog, almost trancelike in its repetitive but shifting audio-violence. Vocalist Masato switches between bowel-vibrating low register, like Cannibal Corpse, and high falsetto shrieks that verge on cartoonish hysteria and madness. The riffs, courtesy of guitarist Daisuke, are amazingly catchy, just made for the mosh pit — grinding and simple,(like mid-period Sepultura, etc.) — at times the band gels into an absolute death/thrash monster, tight and efficient, like Suffocation crossed with Exodus. And the rhythm section, bassist Yuki and drummer Ekisuke, are all over the fucking map.

The Nintendo-style quickie grindcore deconstruction of opener “Introduction” sets the tone nicely. “World Dun Hole” features the world’s most evil funk breakdown. “Umber” brings to mind the brutish minimalism of Prong’s “Beg To Differ” or thuggishly effective Crossover (foreshadowing!), interspersed with the requisite spastic freakouts, mind you. And yep, I called it, they do a cover of “Time Out” by DRI, at one point sounding more like the Muppets’ Dr. Teeth and The Electric Mayhem covering Bon Scott-era AC/DC before erupting into full deathly swagger. The vomiting noises and Oi/Pogues-style singalong choruses on “Everybody Has The Wet” are way too much fun. For variety we get a classical guitar interlude in instrumental “Shit Drop.” “PS From BS” is a short, blunt burst of death/doom that upsurges and then dies, like a good Wire song. Bonus track “Stish Latem” splices and backruns one of their songs into a sonic collage of Metallica’s “Creeping Death” among other nasties. Hey, you got your avante-garde art pranks in my grindcore! No you got your grindcore in my avante-garde art pranks, etc. etc. etc. Smells like roses.

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