Palehorse - Harm Starts Here
7 songs (53:56)
Release year: 2013
Reviewed by Charles
Palehorse are a British sludge band, probably most known for their line-up- two bassists, no guitar. That is to say, when I got the promo, I thought ‘oh, that’s the band with two bassists and no guitar’, so it’s their defining characteristic in our household, anyway. A bit like another British sludge band, Iron Monkey, Palehorse play extremely obnoxious music, but irreverently (tracks here have names like “Five Grown Men (Holding Hands and Staring at the Ocean)”). Listening to the band brings back lots of memories of metal nights at scabby provincial pubs when I was a student.

OK: sometimes, there is some killer riffing to be found. Don’t Bitch My Shit has a great, filthy groove delivered in a grating, hacking bass tone (the polar opposite of the weird warmth generated by another guitar-less line-up, Beehoover). The riff itself is very slippery, shifting itself in the meter like Coalesce or Soilent Green might. See also… actually that may be the only example with the partial exception of Birdfeed.

More often, Harm Starts Here is a much grimmer experience. There are four tracks over eight minutes here, and they tend to lead down some quite sinister routes indeed. The band likes to leave a lot of open space. The abovementioned Five Grown Men… for example, halfway through, simmers down into a neat little drum groove, which just jams around as various things happen over the top: the clanging of bass tones, the buzzing of gloomy electronics, and one of the vocalists muttering angrily about God-knows-what. Opener What is Wrong With You People also lets the drummer stretch out, over an ominous bass crescendo. Other times, Palehorse are basically out to scare you: see the quiet and creepy Full Power Anglo-Gambian Rinseout, or closer Skin Flick which builds very slowly from quiet menace to deafening, feedback-enshrouded climax. In conclusion- woo!

Killing Songs :
Don't bitch My Shit, Full-Power Anglo-Gambian Rinseout
Charles quoted 75 / 100
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