So I crack my eyes open around 11am this morning and slowly start to deconstruct my cocoon from the night before. As I flounder around the room struggling into something resembling clothes, I stop and take a peak out my window. Little white flakes of frozen precipitation are not only swirling in front of the glass panes, they have the tenacity to start accumulating on the ground! Time for long nights and even longer underwear, winter is here folks.
I’ve noticed that once winter hits my musical tastes tend to take a shift towards the darker side. Things I enjoy in summer don’t usually translate to winter, as I like my music to reflect the grey sky, brown slush and black ice on my trek to school. Kicking off the season of malcontent is the newest album from Portland natives, RABBITS. Entitled “Bites Rites”, it was released in September and is available through Good to Die Records.
Musically these maniacally mammals unleash a large-bore assault of distortion, bestial screams and ear-piercing feedback. Imagine the bastard child of sludge and noise, then thrown in a dumpster and adopted by hardcore. Angular, sharp and obtuse, this isn’t the kind of music that soothes you too sleep after a long day in the saddle. It will sooner trash your bedroom and drink all your beer than bite your hand off, but it will probably do that too.
“Bites Rites” is an unrestrained monstrosity, ripping and tearing it’s way through your sensibilities, leaving a gore splattered hole all the way through to the other side. Something truly terrifying emerges when you decide to hybridize some of the loudest genres together, but when it’s done right you end up with someone undeniably unique.
Later tracks incorporate some more avaunt-garde influences, like the mentally unstable piano and psychological background noise in “Whats Going On” or the eerie percussion used to start “On Mars II”. Other songs have something that sounds like a horribly mutilated pop-melody at their core, something that started off innocent but then spent the next decade of it’s life killing rats with broken glass to sell for meth money.
“Bites Rites” is an album with teeth, lots and lots of little razor sharp bastards, ready and willing to shred your skin and mince your bones into a fine paste. You can pick it up for $8 on the Good to Die Bandcamp page and you can stream the rabbit horde below. I also suggest checking out their website which is just as warped as the music it represents.