I fucking love me some dirty noise and I’ll gladly admit me some bias when I’ve got bias to admit. In this case, if it’s southern sounding and violent, I’m already preemptively wet as a fucking poutine in a paper towel. By all intents and purposes, I should be gushing over the latest four-song EP, Invisible Monsters, by California based quintet The Arson Choir, and maybe I am. You’re obviously not illiterate if you’ve made it this far so tally fucking ho, to gush we go.
The blood and guts of The Arson Choir is really just as I’ve already eluded, noise. Filthy, chuggy, twangy, dissonant, chaotic fucking noise. If you really must, you can chalk the whole ordeal to a Vein, Dillinger Escape Plan, and early era Everytime I Die fuck party wherein nobody brought any mustard much less found a comfortable Prius to defile. One could also just as easily say this act satiates the middle ground between the heaviest of Greyhaven’s brand of twang met with the ferocity of Jesus Piece’s type of vicious hardcore, but personally, this description just doesn’t feel nearly pornographic enough for my liking. These cats do what all fans of heavy ultimately want, and this neat little flight of fuckery called Invisible Monsters does its job in the sense that it hits hard while leaving plenty left to be desired. Where one could potentially argue (myself being one) is that there is potentially too much left to be desired and maybe just maybe SOMEHOW a little too much monotony? That or I’m a picky asshole again which is fully possible.
As far as production goes, this piece sits on the gritty end of the spectrum, specifically leaving a bit of dry taste in terms of fatness, fullness, and a few vocal leveling faux pas, but of course delivers in droves what I’ve already regurgitated at you a few too many times here. “The Chemical Cure” kicks in like an episode of Ow, my Balls and carries this tune straight through the following nine some odd minutes with breakneck pace, no regard for human health and even less for dishing out something to break rank, which is truly where my only gripe lies. This piece comes in, smashes your face in, and “Vanisher” it’s way right out of the room leaving you wondering if you were supposed to get fries with that. Ultimately this act slaps but just barely lacks. Where there are addictive levels of heat, there needs to be something to differentiate from the tracks or even remind you that the bitch has ended and gone into round eighty-seven of your relisten. Noise and grind enthusiasts are going to tell me to fuck off, but as a basic bitch southern and noise fan, the thing I look forward to most is something off-color to break the excess fat.
I hate commenting on scores, though I toil over them so, but in this case, I feel the need to make it clear that the guts and organs here are fantastic. Where I’m certain preteens across the internet will snicker at a 6.9/10, the point I’m trying to make is that these dudes are just barely missing the mark of a higher frontier through diversity in sound. Yes, I know this sounds ridiculous, considering this is practically an auditory Jackson Pollock but the fact remains that I blinked and the deed was done. No phone number, no breakfast, not even a towel to wipe my face off with. Do I know what I’m asking for in terms of diversity here? Of course not, it’s not my music, but without any question, this act is staying in my hazy field of view for the sole purposes that I know maturity will strike at some point and I’ll be unquestionably left dickless. It just sadly didn’t happen anywhere in the last nine minutes and one second that it took before the thought to check whether or not I was listening to one song on repeat.
Written by Jason Greenberg
*Edited by Dominic Abate