Friday, June 5, 2009

Snowstorm – Snowstorm [Malleable]

I'm wrapping up my stay in London preparing for my journey elsewhere. I'm not sure what the internet situation is going to be like over the next month so I can't say how often this site will be updated. I'm not planning on going on hiatus or nothing but just letting you know posting will be scattered. I've got some reviews written in a notebook that I need to get around to transcribing into a digital format but I wanted to get a couple more up before I head out tomorrow. Pardon the interruption, the review starts now.
I got a couple of things from Malleable records in Philadelphia who had a hand in two LPs I dug last year by Mincemeat or Tenspeed and Embarker. Keeping consistent with the other stuff I heard from the label, this full length 45rpm 7inch (12 songs) is pretty nuts. Snowstorm, also hailing from Philly, is a bass/drums crew which, now that I’m thinking about it, is one of the most consistent instrument lineups. Lightning Bolt, The Pope, Temperatures, Godheadsilo etc. etc. they are all varying degrees of rad. Only lame one I can think of is that Death From Above 1979 band and they have a dumbass name so it's to be expected. Anyway, that was a round about way of saying add Snowstorm to the list.
So there’s twelve tracks on this thing and they don’t have names or any of that, so in order to keep me from going nuts over reviewing a 7 minute record I’m just gonna treat it as sides. This stuff is pretty thrashin’ but always manages to find a groove even if it only riffs on it for 10-15 seconds. The bass shifts violently between ice pick feedback (trademark of the Malleable crowd) and surprisingly melodic, speed-sludge passages. There are remnants of the bands I mentioned earlier, but Snowstorm is on a frantic kick all their own.
The second side begins with pummeling in mind. With dynamics akin to harsh noise before lauching briefly into a rollicking stoner riff, then breaking down, speeding up and doing all sorts of sonic gymnastics. Awesome and hyperactively epic. The side continues with the same jacked up intensity, mauling your face but allowing for occasional gasps for air. They totally outdo themselves on this side, I’m constantly being crushed in new ways. Rules.
The record blows right past me, where each track is good but they never pass the threshold length where they get stuck in your mind. They drop catchy parts but they don’t repeat ‘em. It makes the record more of an experience than a set of songs.
Pretty killer record overall if you're down with this sort of thing (who isn’t??) and looks-wise this thing is a beauty. Off-white vinyl and killer vellum artwork/sleeve. Still in print!


Anonymous said...

picked a great record to review! the live show is a must see.

Anonymous said...

SNOWSTORM hotties deliver it live - costumes and heavy action. Believe it. Can you find Dave Smolen (Malleable Records kingpin) on the cover of SNOWSTORMS seven inch - look for those sideburns!

Alex Morpurgo said...

I hadn't hear of snowstorm until i saw them live in philly with black pus,which was an awsome show. Snowstorm blew out the speakers 3 minutes in, then they just packed up and left, it was sad, but i've gotten really into them since then. This albums NUTS. i love it and would want to see them do a full set soon!

Auxiliary Out said...

Hey, you've still seen 3 minutes more of Snowstorm than I have so consider yourself lucky haha.

Anonymous said...

Here's as close as you'll get: