Plebeian Grandstand – Lowgazers [France, Black / Hardcore / Noise] (2014)

Throatruiner Records | 3-31-14

Throatruiner Records | 3-31-14

Goddamn it, I love Throatruiner. Since finding this French label a few years ago, my appreciation for the bastard offspring between black, hardcore, sludge, and noise has grown exponentially. What I didn’t understand at the time has now transformed into an appreciation for genre-less heavy music and a recognition for the freedom it promotes. Plebeian Grandstand is a testament to the heights and depths a band can reach when throwing off the shackles of expectation. There is only one goal for Lowgazers, and that is pure annihilation.

Lowgazers, positions itself as the more mature and controlled version of their 2010 debut How Hate Is Hard To Define. While there is still hate, and disaster in both records, the How Hate Is Hard To Define seemed consumed by it rather than Lowgazers, which sounds empowered by it. The tracks are also elongated sometimes reaching a consistent 5 or 6 minutes. Add to this momentary ambient drone tracks and one has a calculated assault. This seems daunting given the nature of the music yet Lowgazers never feels grating or overbearing. Songs like “Aimless Roaming” and “Flail in the Bliss” create a world where the listener is the instigator of madness and demise. It is enriching if not slightly intoxicating.

Music like this is sometimes easy to turn away from. Its outsider nature makes it the victim of non inclusion when discussion the merits of heavy metal. While Plebian Grandstand certainly does not belong to any one family, the power and ruin from Lowgazers goes beyond the qualifications for notice. Lowgazers is one of the heaviest and most barbaric records of the year and it would be a shame if one missed out on its destructive path. Throatruiner releases may not be for everyone but Plebeian Grandstand has created something spectacular which needs to be set loose upon this earth.