Dear Lord, this album is a mess. It is tough to get a handle on what is going on initially, partially because Ed Gein had been described to me in two ways: as a grindcore band, and a tech metal band. After hearing Judas Goats and Dieseleaters, I full on disagree with both descriptions. Ed Gein's sound contains elements of two defunct bands: Disembodied and the August Prophecy. The Disembodied elements are evident in the low end of the sound register that Ed Gein frequently exploits. The band gets its controlled chaos elements from the August Prophecy (a criminally unknown band from the early 00's. No matter where their influences come from, Ed Gein is a three-piece that really seems to push the collective abilities of the band and for that, they should be applauded. The fact that they take on a bit of a political bent with the subject matter of their lyrics is another big plus. A large amount of bands seem to be afraid of that today.
Judas Goats and Diesel Eaters opens up in a rather crushing manner with "Robert Flaig." The album is all over the place and has a few damn good songs worth discussing. The record really starts to shine when Pee Wee Herman/Paul Reubens kicks in to gear. This is the standout track on the album. The song is the most chaotic piece that Ed Gein hurls, and it exemplifies many of the musical motifs that are used on the rest of Judas Goats and Dieseleaters. The eerie piano break in the song is used to excellent effect. The Disembodied influence is very apparent after this break, especially in the guitar tone. The following tracks, "We're Drowning in It," and "Amen" have a similar guitar tone to them. The former has a pretty over the top break about two-thirds of the way into the song. "Christianity as Foreign Policy" is a powerful track where the band continues to change things up on the listener by using every trick except tossing a can of quarters down the stairs. The last song on the record is a cover of Nirvana's "Breed". This is a major slip up for the band. It is neat to hear bands' takes on songs by good bands, but, in this case, the cover takes away from the cohesiveness of the album as a whole.
Overall, Ed Gein does an admirable job on Judas Goats and Dieseleaters. The album could use a little more focus, dropping a couple of the weaker songs, and easing up on some of the sophomoric lyrical content. With a strong second album, Ed Gein is truly honing their sound and realizing some of their potential. If they stick around, they might just write the album that it sounds that they are capable of with their abilities. If heavy, bludgeoning, chaotic metal is what you are into, give this record a spin or two. You might find this to be worth your time and money.
6.8 / 10
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