Shrug – Apathy


Shrug – Apathy (Blackened Death)

When it comes to the music I have to review, two words scare me more than most. The first is “technical” and I have one of those on my review pile for this week, the other is “experimental”. Which is exactly what I have here.

Shrug is band number 2000400402012 for Richard Weeks, the man that churns out more (mostly quality) music than most… but is Shrug a step too far for my delicate ears?

The amount of Metal on this album isn’t high, but that’s ok as I have wide ranging tastes. It’s more a depressing homage to 80s Gothdom and Electronica. Unfortunately, that’s mixed in with Harsh Noise…  loads of static that comes and goes and it scares the shit out of me practically every time.

The eponymous track Shrug is a fuzzed up Doom diatribe, which perversely reminds me of a Bad Manners track. The chorus has similar wording and there is an element of catchiness fighting its way through the gloom, which is a trademark of Mr Weeks’ work.

The bad news is, that for every quality moment like Shrug, there’s a non-musical segment… I can’t really call them songs… that break up the flow and I’m reaching for the skip button. There are also elements of what I can only describe as the Harsh Noise equivalent of insanity. It’s so crazy I can’t really comprehend what I’m actually listening to.

The only time I think the two styles mesh is at the end of Staring At The Sun, where the Noise closes the song down and that actually makes sense to me.

Overall, this would make a mighty fine EP, but there’s too much that doesn’t align with my tastes. And I’m obviously not a fan of the experimental nature of some of the tracks here. The songs I like, are actually of a really high standard, I’m just not enamoured with what’s around them.

Like Marmite, this will probably be a love or hate affair for most. Personally I fucking hate Marmite, so I guess I’ll leave you with this tagline.

Shrug, they are better than Marmite

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