Cyst – Demo C15

8 September 2015 offering No Comment

R-6929113-1429728506-7082.jpegCyst – Demo C15

Danvers State Recordings

Give a man a guitar, a damp basement and a four track/tape machine and you can expect a few different outcomes-shitty one man black metal, garbage drone metal, Fred Frith experimentalism, or, thankfully, this crude and sickening demo from Cyst. Cyst is the product of a member of the “dual-bass weed-grind” Suffering Bastard (they rule!) and much of the content of that band revolved around anger, hatred, and social commentary of a vile variety in short blasts.

Instead of revisiting old sounds and themes, Cyst‘s approach is what sounds like stretched out carpets of threadbare strings arranged by thick plumes of the richest cannabis, contempt, and much-needed alone time. Focusing on just guitars and vocals, I was surprised at how rich and consuming this release is even though it’s all of fifteen minutes. Lo-fi, sure, but nothing here needs to have any higher resolution because the grim elements that compose these tracks are supposed to be murky and not coddled.

“Alazif IA IA IA IA” makes up side A and is the creepier of the two songs. Cyst spurts guitar sourced feedback rhythmically and purposefully with an almost graceful attitude of pedal distortion summoning ballet. This sounds like it was recorded in a tin can somewhere in Finland, but the cloth is wet with tone, and mood gouged straight from the heart of a rusted and pallid Rhode Island. The vocals are vivid and ashen deep-throated yawls and accent the guitar points richly. Side B’s “The Pillars Of Ur” is more of an ambient black metal sounding track with a nice percussive assortment of guitar hammering and high pitched throat. The arrested riff-strumming towards the end of the track is enjoyable for me because it’s a reminder that I’m listening to a non-synthesizer instrument with a very live essence, but one that emanates an almost cadaver like quality to it as well.

I hate seeing a snobby shrike with 900 boutique pedals staring at his/her feet trying to ransack Explosions In The Sky riffs for upwards of an hour a midst fatiguing delay and reverb, while asking the audience to give him/her “space” to play. With Cyst, there is no idle drone wanking here, unsurprisingly, but the guitar is still a hammering against the grain. Alas, there should be more guitar work like this cassette demo. With such ambiance, there is yet much strumming and striking that persists in structured and articulate tones and pacing. This kind of music is nothing new, but it is always refreshing for me to hear it well-done sans pomp and bullshit dog and pony show.

My absolute favorite part of these two pieces, however, are the respective endings of the songs…the part where you hear the sound of amps being shut off, cords being unplugged, and a silent reflection of the grime one has just committed to tape. Both tracks seem to have been made from a single (or dual) mic which reminds me of the stuff Thrones had done in his earlier days, and both tracks end with a sudden resolve. Most excellent.

Also worth noting…35 copies means you had better act fast.

Composition: ★★★★☆
Sounds: ★★★½☆
Production Quality: ★★★☆☆
Concept: ★★★☆☆
Packaging: ★★½☆☆
Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆

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