(Cudgel Agency)


MARK: 85/100


The first things popping to one's eyes are the extremely nice artwork and pictures included in the 2nd long-awaited album of the Austrian 4-piece, who presents us social lyrics put in an interesting and sarcastic style, which is set on a tissue displaying much more than simple classic hyper-grind. They like to call it grind rock, the way it would be if Napalm Death jammed with Melvins and the definition is quite close to the reality.

As a matter of fact the 12 tracks, which enjoy a very good production and good mixing, go over the long Napalm Death evolution, as shown by "Face to Face", including a "From Enslavement to Obliteration"-like riff, though also showing different solutions like with the final bridge. "Distance to the Truth" shows a refrain alà "Utopia Banished", but also some amusing and playful instrumental parts, while "Re-Progression" goes back to the times of "Fear, Emptiness and Despair".

By "The Daily Grind" we find more personality from the band, even if the imprint of the UK grinders comes out again, and "To Die is Not Enough" - whose artwork is taken from the great documentary-film "Der Weg Nach Eden" by cult-director Robert Adrian Pejo - combines groove and brutality with lots of experience, whereas "One-Track Minded" and "Kiss or Kill" are two short violent grindcore blasts, useful to wake up the audience live.

I also noticed that the Austrians have large musical backgrounds, as evinced by the lyrics of "Turn Inside out", inspired by U2's "Rattle and Hum", I swear it! The song is a question of slow and aggressive metal, though not grind, and as a matter of fact it lasts more than 6 minutes. I think this is the direction where Mastic Scum are gonna go to in the nearest future.

The track "Liar" is preceded by an intro already used by Lividity, however the song is really pleasant, a sort of mix between grind and Lividity style (+ Pungent Stench in the close). After "The Generation X", again a little latest Napalm Death-addicted, we have some mince core in the vein of Agathocles and a little bit of Sore Throat, with another SUPERB fading-out conclusive chorus. The last composition proves to be quite effective; another not grind song, but a medium-paced modern one.

In the end it has to be said that if Napalm Death didn't exist, Mastic Scum would probably be my favourite band; if they can work their asses off to climb the final higher step, that is more originality, next time we'll be in front of a true masterpiece, out of fashion, yeah, but who cares?


Burgwiesweg 155 - 5724 Stuhlfelden - Austria
Tel: +43 699 12597254 Fax: +43 6562 4179
E-mail: info@masticscum.com