“Friendship, fun and rock n roll” is the statement behind this mind-twisting album from Zapruder. At its musical heart is a mathcore style strongly reminiscent of Dillinger Escape Plan, so you can expect to be screamed at.
The manic screaming and hardcore assault may seem crude and anarchic on the face of it, but the beauty is in the detail. Technically it’s tight but on the third track “Half-stache Man” Zapruder introduce another side with a haunting post metal section and build-up. A melancholic saxophone section then breaks the norm, if there is such a thing. The Elvis style vocal of this song “Leaving Montréal” leads to a pungent blues rock number. It’s quite different from the fury we’ve heard up to now. “Dracula Love Hotel” takes us back to the technical riffage and controlled metal chaos, but there is spice with an emotive chorus and a silky, sad sax section. The lyrics are as suggestive as the music. The line “This decadence is delicacy” sums up the song neatly. Sludge then meets hardcore and more blues rock on “Martin Bell”. Again the chorus is appealing. It’s clear that Zapruder don’t have musical boundaries. I like this. Better still, it all hangs together even when it sounds like disorganised chaos, which to be fair it rarely does. Behind this are some highly creative musicians. The artwork by the way is as interesting as the album itself. “Piss-Soaked” is as charming as it sounds, and through the murky anger we hear such wonderful Anglo-Frenchisms such as “Well first I need to sortir mon invite and faire de la place to drink all the time”. “Back in Town” is a grisly piece of embittered and angry sludge with no holes barred and another memorable and catchy chorus, which you wouldn’t expect. The final song “Fly Me to the Ceiling” is as grim as hell and presented in hardcore fashion, but captures the overall ambiance of this album: a bleak theme, raucously heavy presentation but interesting and engaging in its pattern.
I realise this isn’t going to be everyone’s tasse de thé but I like it. With a multitude of styles thrown into the mix, the result is nine separate creations depicting a chaotic world. The impression given is that is it’s five blokes having a laugh, but actually these songs are really well constructed, and at the same time they’re infectious.
(8.5/10 Andrew Doherty)