Music

Oxbow: Fuckfest

As the title alone suggests, it’s clear that Oxbow isn’t playing by the rules or going for mass appeal with Fuckfest. They’re going for your throat by making their music their way, and you’ll either respect it or go to hell.


Oxbow

Fuckfest

Label: Hydra Head
US Release Date: 2009-09-15
UK Release Date: 2009-09-15
Amazon
iTunes

The opening vinyl crackle and quasi-folk intro of Oxbow’s 1989 debut Fuckfest are deceptive forces that give no indication of how you’re about to be pummeled by some kind of orgiastic freeform music that incorporates just about every genre of rock ever conceived. Opener “Curse” has an overall vibe of staggering hardcore that melts into a demented freakout. Eugene Robinson’s vocals are totally unintelligible, but it’s evident that he is being tormented by something awful -- broken glass in his shoes, or a fiery demon? -- as he shrieks and mutters. “30 Miles” has a college rock meets Alice in Chains vibe, and the sporadic instrumentation of “Valley” leaves you disoriented like a drunken ride on a merry-go-round. The grungy stomp of “Bull’s Eye” is accompanied by Robinson’s possessed screeching, which might ruin the song if you don’t keep in mind that this is not made for MTV. “Yoke” takes on the feel of a raunchy and hallucinatory marching band, and the nine-minute drone of “Hunger” isn’t so much music as it is a weird kind of distorted ambiance that suggests drowning slowly. Therein is the draw and repulsion of Oxbow: It’s bizarre music that alternates between structured and random, but it’s always an expression of raw emotion. As the title alone suggests, it’s clear that Oxbow isn’t playing by the rules or going for mass appeal with Fuckfest. They’re going for your throat by making their music their way, and you’ll either respect it or go to hell.

6
Music


Books


Film


Recent
Television

'Tiger King' and the Post-Truth Culture War

Tiger King -- released during and dominating the streaming-in-lockdown era -- exemplifies in real-time the feedback loop between entertainment and ideology.

Books

Ivy Mix's 'Spirits of Latin America' Evokes the Ancestors

A common thread unites Ivy Mix's engaging Spirits of Latin America; "the chaotic intermixture between indigenous and European traditions" is still an inextricable facet of life for everyone who inhabits the "New World".

Film

Contemporary Urbanity and Blackness in 'New Jack City'

Hood films are a jarring eviction notice for traditional Civil Rights rhetoric and, possibly, leadership -- in other words, "What has the Civil Rights movement done for me lately?"

Books

'How to Handle a Crowd' Goes to the Moderators

Anika Gupta's How to Handle a Crowd casts a long-overdue spotlight on the work that goes into making online communities enjoyable and rewarding.

Music

Regis' New LP Reaffirms His Gift for Grinding Industrial Terror

Regis' music often feels so distorted, so twisted out of shape, even the most human moments feel modular. Voices become indistinguishable from machines on Hidden in This Is the Light That You Miss.

Reviews

DMA's Go for BritElectroPop on 'The Glow'

Aussie Britpoppers the DMA's enlist Stuart Price to try their hand at electropop on The Glow. It's not their best look.

Film

On Infinity in Miranda July's 'Me and You and Everyone We Know'

In a strange kind of way, Miranda July's Me and You and Everyone We Know is about two competing notions of "forever" in relation to love.

Music

Considering the Legacy of Deerhoof with Greg Saunier

Working in different cities, recording parts as MP3s, and stitching them together, Deerhoof once again show total disregard for the very concept of genre with their latest, Future Teenage Cave Artists.

Music

Joshua Ray Walker Is 'Glad You Made It'

Texas' Joshua Ray Walker creates songs on Glad You Made It that could have been on a rural roadhouse jukebox back in the 1950s. Their quotidian concerns sound as true now as they would have back then.

Music

100 gecs Remix Debut with Help From Fall Out Boy, Charli XCX and More

100 gecs' follow up their debut with a "remix album" stuffed with features, remixes, covers, and a couple of new recordings. But don't worry, it's just as blissfully difficult as their debut.

Television

What 'Avatar: The Last Airbender' Taught Me About Unlearning Toxic Masculinity

When I first came out as trans, I desperately wanted acceptance and validation into the "male gender", and espoused negative beliefs toward my femininity. Avatar: The Last Airbender helped me transcend that.

Interviews

Nu Deco Ensemble and Kishi Bashi Remake "I Am the Antichrist to You" (premiere + interview)

Nu Deco Ensemble and Kishi Bashi team up for a gorgeous live performance of "I Am the Antichrist to You", which has been given an orchestral renovation.

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews

Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.