Tuesday, July 30, 2013
This is what evil sounds like. Well, evilish.
The band is Psyclon Nine. They're from the San Francisco Bay area. Labelers call the sound aggrotech/industrial metal. The singer's name is Nero Bellum and that voice (it is a guy)—is the sound of the worst, off-the-meds, end-of-a-relationship, dish hurling argument you've ever had. A song that sounds like an argument—such a concept. Could be the soundtrack to inspire teenage shootings. (Let's hope not.)
The video has been called bizarre but that may be overselling its merits. That synthesizer certainly takes it down a few notches. It's like a game show theme leaking in from a television someone left on in the studio. It sucks the evil wind right out of the sails. The song's intro is pretty spooky, with the looped banshee wail and the seizure camera style but even that's spoiled by the straight-to-video caliber Satanic voice. Combined with the synth sound, if it's evil it's topped with a melting block of processed cheese. You do have to wonder how Mr. Bellum can keep up the scratching vocals for the four minutes needed to get through this much less a whole live set. He's going to have nodes on his vocal cords the size of cobblestones.
But Bellum is only one of legions in the genre that all sing exactly like this, rasp for rasp—with all the diversity of ancient Egyptian painting. It's kind of oppressive. Though there's one advantage: if a singer leaves, replacing them is much easier.
Take caution when watching, the visuals might induce overstimulation. Keep out of reach of small children.
The song is catchy, though.