Today,Thursday March 20, 2014, is the first day of Spring, but if you were to step outside my house you’d discover the temperature is 35 degrees with a chance of snow beginning next week. In honor of the upcoming warm weather, I always try to get out of the house after being cooped up inside for so many months. I decided to put my shoes on, grab my jacket, I-pod and headphones and take a walk around the old neighborhood. Now normally I would pick some music that is up tempo to set a brisk pace, but I went for the unknown and picked the split album from Cavern and Anthesis, which I had picked to review next. Looking back on my stroll around the neighborhood, I must have entertained whoever was watching me walk to the various tempos that this album has to offer.
Both bands have three members and hail from New Brunswick, Canada. Now, the interesting thing I found out when doing some research on these two bands is that bassist/vocalist Scott Lilly and guitarist Scott Miller play in both bands, with Chuck Roherty drumming for Cavern and Andrew Martin behind the kit for Anthesis. The split album is around 33 minutes long, consisting of ten tracks with the first six by Cavern.
Right out of the gate, I noticed the blink of an eye tempos that course through Cavern‘s songs. ‘Plague/Smog,’ ‘Winter’ and ‘Nyos’ make you feel like you are getting run over by an 18-wheel Mack truck, with ferocious guitar riffs, bloodcurdling screams and Roherty‘s take no prisoners blast beats .’Swarm’ and ‘Greed’ are very slow and sludgy, and when I hear theses tracks my mind conjures up images of myself being stuck in a tar pit or quicksand, trying to break free with every muscle in my body. The last track, ‘Genie,’ fuses both tempos perfectly, and it is topped off with a colossal bass line.
Anthesis‘s sound is similar to Cavern‘s, but there are moments in their songs were the tempo is frantic. In ‘Voices’ and ‘Iced Currant and Crimson Ivy,’ the guitars are attacking you from every angle. When the cease fire is ordered, you are subjected to the guitar and bass being tuned so low your brain will start rattling in your skull. When I close my eyes and listen to ‘In Progress,’ I can picture Martin‘s machine gun beats transporting me to the intense Omaha Beach front lines, struggling against the Germans’ artillery fire in the movie “Saving Private Ryan.”
So I give this warning to my neighbors if they see me out and about: I’m not crazy, and I didn’t create a new workout which consists of walking frantically then all of a sudden acting like I’m wading through hardening cement. I’m just going with the flow of the brutal offerings of Cavern and Anthesis.