Iwrestledabearonce defy classification. Any sincere attempts to do so will either be woefully vague and inaccurate or will border on a run-on sentence.
Their second full length for Century Media, ‘Ruining It For Everybody’ will ruin a lot of things for a lot of people. Many fans of straightforward metal will continue to be enraged by the electronic forays that the band has become known for along with the shifting time-signatures and refusal (for the most part) to adhere to traditional song structures. They are also entirely too heavy and spastically brutal for most electronica nerds. You can’t even call them industrial metal because their heavily detuned guitars are always all over the place. Imagine a female-fronted Dillinger Escape Plan that liked to listen to Horse the Band, Napalm Death, and maybe some Bjork. Still with me? Good. Now add some stimulants and turn it to 11. That’s what Iwrestledabearonce sounds like. Kind of.
Along with the songs themselves being more tightly constructed than on ‘It’s All Happening,’ the tracks are sequenced much more efficiently. The start of the album features tunes that aren’t dissimilar from much of what was on their debut and is a good (yet still harsh) way to ease fans into the uncharted waters that lie ahead. Whereas their debut had a trippy, electronic interlude awkwardly placed toward the end of the album, ‘This Head Music Makes My Eyes Rain’ is a little closer to the middle. This track is the final send-off to the past because starting with ‘It Is ‘Bro’ Isn’t It?’ things really get brutal. They also get far more melodic, catchy and coherent than ever before. There was more time to work on this album and it avoids a lot of the ‘rushed’ feeling that ‘It’s All Happening’ gave off.
Anyone who hated the band before will likely continue to do so. Not everyone is cut out for jazzy-proggy-ADD metal that has random bells and whistles thrown in there. Those who weren’t driven from the room within the first ten seconds of hearing one of their songs will be rewarded with an unpredictable assault on their ears.
You might not like what they do, but it’s hard to deny that they’re getting even better at it.
This post was written by:
J.J. Ellis – When J.J. Ellis isn’t writing as the Allentown DVD Examiner, his Decent Exposure Radio can be heard on the air every Friday night from 10:30 to midnight (EST) on WXLV 90.3 FM or wxlvradio.com!