Cable Variable Speed Drive

Cable’s 1996 debut has been woefully out-of-print for at least a decade but in celebration of the reforming of this Connecticut juggernaut, Translation Loss has lovingly remastered and repackaged Variable Speed Drive with three bonus tracks from an early demo. This album is a full-fledged salvo of the club-footed hardcore the band favoured before morphing into the disjointed doom rock of their later years. "Needles vs. Nails,” "Water.Down.Rock” and the doomy "Paperplanecrash” are crash-and-burn anthems of stale beer and fist fights, while "Carolina Eyes” provides extra time to brood over highway hypnosis while touring. The demo tracks, recorded with future Isis bassist Jeff Caxide, hold up surprisingly well in the Cable oeuvre. The Buzzov*en-like samples peppered throughout the tracks add a dash of unease to the mix. "Plastic” and "Chained” ply the dissonant hardcore that made them famous but "Flowers & Funerals” offers slower tempos and intriguing vocals that made their later addition to the Hydra Head roster a given. As the group are currently writing the follow-up to 2004’s Pigs Never Fly, this reissue should give Cable fans another reason to crow. (Translation Loss)