"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Magrudergrind - "Crusher" (CD/EP)

Magrudergrind - "Crusher" CD/EP cover image

"Crusher" track listing:

1. Leech
2. Conditioned Minds
3. Incapacity Reigns
4. Stagnant
5. Heaviest Bombing
6. Cognition

Reviewed by on January 4, 2011

"...sponsor or no, this is a brief but worthy effort from these new era guardians of DC D.I.Y. who should by no means be in danger of having their lifetime punx passes revoked."

Washington, DC-based grinders Magrudergrind may have left more than a few purists howling from high atop their pulpits constructed of Assuck and Terrorizer 7-inches when they announced their collaboration with the Scion car company in releasing their latest EP, “Crusher,” as a free download. But rest assured that this seemingly sacrilegious union has done nothing to dilute the potent venom that is Magrudergrind’s trademark mix of grind, blinding thrash, and Swedish death metal tone.

“Crusher” bowls through six songs in just 12 minutes as these young veterans of two full lengths and multiple splits take listeners on a rocket propelled, suspension smashing dune buggy tour of all things grinding and scum coated. “Leech” displays the band’s modern and classic grindcore influences like a torn denim jacket covered from top to tail in home-sewn band patches. “Conditioned Minds” brings in a lock-step breakdown chorus and the same overdriven Boss pedal tone that can be heard throughout the release. “Incapacity Reigns” is pure, down-tuned crust with plenty of balls and bravado to spare. And “Stagnant” exhibits the throat defiling vocals and hardcore shouts that have come to define the band’s delivery. And not to worry; Magrudergrind’s tradition of including hip hop samples at the end of songs is continued on “Heaviest Bombing.”

All of this builds to this EP’s big surprise, the final track, “Cognition.” At over five minutes long, it takes up nearly half the record, and features some left field doom influences, far from the well worn grind path. Slow and jerky with a wailing guitar solo, it’s ugly, dissonant, and devolving.

The debate about Magrudergrind’s choice in corporate sponsorship, or more accurately their decision to have a corporate sponsor at all, will no doubt rage on. But all in all, sponsor or no, this is a brief but worthy effort from these new era guardians of DC D.I.Y. who should by no means be in danger of having their lifetime punx passes revoked.

Highs: "Crusher" hits all the grind high notes and still leaves room for a surprise or two.

Lows: No glaring missteps to speak of here.

Bottom line: It's a free download, so what have fans really got to lose?

Rated 4.0 out of 5 skulls
4.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)