Friday, January 3, 2014

Oxbow - An Evil Heat (Neurot, 2002)

Let's get one thing clear right off the bat: Eugene Robinson's stage personnae is a manifestation of the devil. This six foot plus, muscle bound titan of a man ( a professional fighter and published author on the subject of fighting) wears only his briefs while jumping around stage singing about the most vile things imaginable. I've always compared him to a lyricist as dark and twisted as Nick Cave but without the confusing and beautiful poetic qualities. Don't get me wrong, there is a definitive poetry to Oxbow and their particular aesthetic, its just not pretty in any way. Think Michael Gira and David Yow both transplanted into the body of a heavyweight UFC champion. Oxbow has also been compared to "a spoiled Birthday Party".

Oxbow makes a bizarre blend of avant garde metal, blues, noise and odd time signatures of melancholy hardcore. Don't assume their just another stoner / sludge band because they release on Neurot. They are completely different from everything else, not just on the label, but anywhere.

The narrative of the album feels like a Faust story set in the crack house of the rising sun. This is unnerving, biting, cynical, depressing and nihilistic music. Unabashed hate, violence and misery is what you'll get here. Nothing else.

Oxbow is one of the greatest and most underrated bands of all time.

Listen to a playlist of the album here:

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