Coughs Secret Passage

On their sophomore release, this Chicago six-piece demolition crew ratchets up the energy and the sense of reckless abandon that its music seems to emit. The persistent dual drum (plus oil barrels) clamour is a tribal war cry, amplified by singer Anya Davidson’s gruff growl and the squealing sax of Jail Flanagan. The progress across the battlefield is bloody and steaming and reeks of seared flesh, but Coughs forge onward. The guitar and bass fall into lockstep with the drums, creating a rhythmic war machine bent on destroying precious eardrums. If Coughs relent at any time on Secret Passage, it’s to regroup and plan a surprise attack. When Flanagan puts the sax down and steps behind the keyboard, such as on "Dark Powers,” a hint of melody seeps through the thuggish din. However, the assault never lets up. Corpses are flayed, intestines hang limply from empty torsos and skulls are removed with spinal cords intact, proving that Coughs are easily the most frightening rock band of the moment. (Load)