Raspberry Bulbs - "Groping the Angel's Face" (stream)

It must be some sort of odd subconscious association, but Raspberry Bulbs has always sounded to me more like the name of an Elephant Six band than the strange harsh, noisy, black metal-tinted punk amalgam of their past releases.

Listening to “Groping the Angel’s Face", from Deformed Worship, due out this month on Blackest Ever Black, makes pinning them down to one style or another even more of challenge than the one presented by their name.

Certainly a majority of the vocals, and the lo-fi recording setup, are in line with black metal, but those signifiers are welded to a stripped-down, scarified approximation of ‘80s lockstep noise punk, and the vocals occasionally approach an atonal yowl rather than the standard mid-range scream. The resulting sound (picture a world where the Jesus Lizard and Burzum joined musical forces and you’re not terribly far off) is refreshingly untrod territory, with a terrific amount of momentum behind such an at-times minimalist foundation. Whatever strange wilderness Deformed Worship finds the band traversing, from the sound of “Groping the Angel’s Face", it will be more than worth the hike.

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