Thursday, July 12, 2012
AXES - 7" EP
AXES did me in with one fell swoop.
This doesn't happen every day - buying a band's vinyl debut mere minutes after clicking the link Racer sends me - but that's exactly what happened after hearing the first song on the self-titled ep from AXES. Thanks Racer. Now that I have the 7" German import via Chris at Life And Death Records (took less than a week to get here), I'm ready to spill my guts.
Forged deep in the underground rock scene near Dresden, AXES meld colossal stoner riffage and grooves with the piss-off attitude of DIY punk/hardcore. Dig it. The sharp-edged ep is a scant three songs, though I get a strong feeling I might be hearing a lot more from this three-piece. Hope I'm not wrong.
Side A, or the first track, "Trap My Eyes", is the one that really did it for me and I'm sure it's the side that's gonna get worn out the quickest. It's rattling windows right now. I can feel the vibrations from my stereo coming up from the floor through the laptop keyboard to my fingertips. After the vinyl pops and crackles a few times I'm treated to razor-sharp feedback before honed, psyched-out bluesy stoner riffs and spacey vocals. The groove burns slow, like the finest hash. This is SO sick. The tension builds and nears combustion. The tempo picks up speed about halfway through and the vocals turn more hardcore. Ends with the same wicked riffage as near the beginning. A damn impressive song in every aspect.
"Barred Debt" leads off side B and highlights AXES' punk-rock edge. While the first track has more of a stoner vibe, this one begins with pure punk fury and slows to a crawl before picking up speed again. I'm really not a huge fan of the repetitive drum beat thing - or the hardcore screaming. Love the killer bass breakdown in the middle, and later the cool guitar solo while the drummer goes off, still I think it's my least favorite out of the three songs.
"Vows" quickly makes me forget my tiny bit of disappointment. How? You guessed it: kicks off with a promising cowbell. I've said it before, but I'm a sucker for a cowbell, especially when it's accompanied by some heavy, fuzzy bass lines. Rockin'. At just over three minutes, it's the shortest song on the ep yet I think it exemplifies exactly what AXES are all about.
Character. AXES have plenty of it.
Stream the ep on Bandcamp and download the digital version for free. That's right. Then I'd suggest you go ahead and show how much you appreciate it. Get the vinyl too, which is available in both clear/black swirl and traditional black. Almost 250 copies are plain black vinyl. Only 66 color records were made and I bought one of them. So there. Get what's left while you still can.