While eventually churning out some less than desirable material late in their career, there is no arguing the impact early Discharge made in both the punk and metal scenes—going so far as to create their own sub-genre in the process. D-beat, as it is aptly titled, signifies thick, lumbering guitars matched with an intensely repetitive drum beat, and shouted vocals, usually void of any proper range—it all makes for an acutely ripping yet mind-numbing affair. D-beat is both the blight and the boon of extreme music. There are countless contemporary groups—often called “Dis bands” because they use the “Dis” prefix in their name—that do little for the genre other than offer obtuse Discharge imitations. But occasionally a band comes along, tendering a much-needed dose of adrenaline and spirit in all the right places. Mauser seems hell-bent on falling in with the latter.
In terms of underground punk, there has been a noticeable trend lately towards a less-produced sound—a focus more on rawness and distortion, than on cleanliness. Such is the case with this Gainesville, FL four piece’s impressive new 7”. There is an obstinate noisiness present throughout End of the Line—blown-out, screaming vocals, guitars and bass dripping with reverb, and severe blast beat drums—that will leave the listener feeling dizzy, exhausted, and quite possibly looking for a Xanax. Yes, played at the proper volume (loud, duh), this stuff is totally capable of triggering a panic attack.
This particular pressing comes, courtesy of Vinyl Rites, on a nice thick white vinyl. End of the Line is a total of six songs, lyrically addressing a variety of topics such as discontent with the 40-hour-a-week rat race, the ruthless ambition of soulless business man, and the repercussions felt worldwide by our country’s involvement in decade-long war. Not by any means untouched subject matter in the D-beat universe, but, tunefully speaking, it’s an impactful record for sure. As if my jam band-loving neighbors didn’t already have enough reasons to hate me, I’ve had this record maxing out my speakers on the regular since I nabbed it back in February. It is certainly one of the best EPs to come out this year.
As for comparisons; these songs would fit nicely alongside recent releases by Mörpheme, Kriegs?og, Nerveskade or Vaccuum. In a genre that has its fair share of stale fish, it’s refreshing to see some long-overdue originality and energy is surfacing.
8.4 / 10
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