No Smoke Without Fire (Review: Extreme Smoke 57 / H Incident 2012)


Musical theory and mechanics alas aren't really in my faculties of cognition, everything in my review repertoire being construed from emotional perception, an amateurish grasp on the fundamentals and a complacency found by the sheer quantity of music I expose myself to, that I may pick up on distinctions and similarities offering some level of comparability when writing. At best I am an overenthusiastic fan who lacks a decent hobby and thus commit myself to this passion, and like any fan who pays too much attention to something crackpot notions and fan theories are bound to spring up. One such theory I subscribe to, a sentiment probably shared by many already is that grindcore is an umbrella genre, ie its not limited to a particular set of rules or standards, but instead is a collection of various play styles, although different in content and expression share a similar alignment and thus are grouped together; the recent pairing in wax of slavic brothers in grind Extreme Smoke 57 and H-Incident being an obnoxious piece of evidence to such a claim. 

So first up is Slovenia's Extreme Smoke 57, who in an alternate universe alongside other continental European grind fathers like Patareni and Schismopathic are given their rightful due for their lessor role in shaping the genre back in the genres infantile years. In any case their 15 years on ice came to an end back in 2008 and this recent exploit alongside two other splits form their forray into the world of 21st century grind. The tail end of their earlier sounds came across as an outrageous brawling mess of Sore Throat, with an unyielding fanaticism placed on speed, brevity of songs and bordering on the confines of noise, yet this recent expedition seems to tone down much of that in great sizeable chunks in place of  more grooving rumbles and spittling simmers of noisegrind tenacity. Clearly their time in absence has been cruel to them and cut down on their reflexability and dulled their hearing, however this is a limitation the band have realised for they have acted upon it quite fiercely forsaking much of their past and developed a tight frollocking Bathtubshitter type groove, gutter and absurdities, even so though its an austere demotion that yanks them into mediocrity. That being said though their trinity of tracks have no shortage of character, a bizzare sticky sort that will find you taken unawares by the peculiar rebellious guitar rolls, even after repeated listens. Extreme Smoke 57 are somewhat outgunned by their legacy and whats on offer on the grind scene currently, but their side itself ain't half bad, an innate eccentricity that is interesting to say the least. 

Polands H-Incident occupy the B side of this release and tear out some callous grind grit, to whom in grind we crust is a directive served out with intense barbarity. Its the violent elements of G-Anx sheathed with buzzsaw guitar work, and is bound to make you keel over in aural convulsion, its philistine tone hellbent on offering a fortified expression of choleric wrath, abandoning all niceties and musical civilities and sophistication's in favour of a strong arm of grind primalism. Although not usually one for wasteful intros that have no bearing on the core content, the rightfully titled chaos introduction sets the mood just right, a sampling of violence before H Incident come stomping in and letting all hell break loose; sampling bleeding in at the end of the release also, depressurizing it from its inflamed temperament. There is something highly effective about the storm of burly guitar fuzz, ferocious blasts and intense screams which are all thrown together clashing violently that satisfies the inner brute in you. Even when H-Incident try to go all civilised and peace-punx with its penultament track Bands of Fools, it serves nothing more than to build the hunger for that eruption of musical bastardry again, to which after a minute of respite they drop the decorum and go back to hammering your in head in. The duo let loose all those years of punk bile in 5 minute outburst of unpretentious to the point musical flagellation, and although much to the detriment of my physical well being I would love to see something more lengthy from them.

Grindfather Production