Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Heaviest Album I've Heard - Acid Bath - When the Kite Strings Pop



Well, "heavy" can be the most subjective of terms. With regard to what we're hearing, any Slayer record can prove to be the most violently riff-gasmic, while Sleep's Dopesmoker can boast the title of tightest bong-packed buzz. And lyrically, track your most obscure wrist-cutter who managed enough strength to pen his final words and you could probably spin them into the heaviest lyrics ever strung to vocal.

As a total sludge-o-phile, I can attest that any release from Buzzov*en or EYEHATEGOD could garner my nod. My perspective quickly slivers and bleeds out the stoners and thrashers, leaving me with a muddled mouth of metal's filthiest offering. The heaviest of albums would need to surpass all else both sonically and thematically.

Acid Bath's metal amalgam of thrash, sludge, noise, and misanthropy cements "When The Kite String Pops" as my hands-down heaviest. Let's be serious, this was a sweaty, southern Dax Riggs undercarriage dragged through shit and quartered in the sun. Every gasp is laced with opiates and every note reeks of rusty death-rattle. Louisiana's murkiest bayous can't contend with the sticky sweetness offered on this album.

Pairing the mood with the metal is only half the scope. Sure, the double kick drum of "Dope Fiend" is immediately detectable and the slow acoustic moments introducing "The Bones of Baby Dolls" may turn away the mulletheads. But fusing thrash, black metal, and stoner-sludge dejection undoubtedly places Acid Bath atop my list of seminal, influential metal bands.

Bottom line: This record scared the fucking shit out of me. I've never forgotten it, and anyone who ever got through the first warbled moments of "The Blue" feels the same. Shifting tempos combine with a definitive metal bouillabaisse that's unmatched to this day, nineteen years later. Relevance is fleeting, heaviness is subjective, and influence is arguable. Here, Acid Bath transcend everything and dent your mind. Heavy in both style and substance, "When The Kite String Pops" is impossible to ignore on any level, be it influential or contemporary.

--Seth


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