Gaza I Don't Care Where I Go When I Die

Those lamenting Premonitions of War’s apparent inability to release a follow-up LP probably already own this, but it nonetheless comes highly recommended. Fusing the aforementioned group’s affinity for Southern sludge and fast paced metallic hardcore with the grinding, obtuse battery of Ed Gein, plus a whole lot of additional grime to boot, Gaza have left an otherwise mediocre year for Metal Blade and its subsidiaries on a much more positive, extremely atonal note. Certain passages descend into barely listenable noise and Converge-esque convolution, although there always seems to be something sharply different lurking shortly thereafter — Gaza are a somewhat schizophrenic, unfocused listen, but are all that much more aggressive for it. The added annoyance from not being able to nod one’s head for longer than a few seconds makes their rare moments of consistency hit that much harder. Graced with a production job muddier than a Vancouver riverbank and lyrics that directly ridicule Hawthorne Heights and Hatebreed, among others, Gaza are clearly not out to win accolades from the mainstream in any sense, which is their primary strength — abrasion along with a keen sense of dynamic. Fans of any of the aforementioned groups, barring Hawthorne Heights perhaps, now have a strong contender for their wish lists as well as a worthy distraction until that new Premonitions record hits. Are you listening, Victory? (Blackmarket Activities)