le Butcherettes Album Review
I think that it’s fair to say that I have never been less prepared to experience new sounds as I was the day Cretin sent me Le Butcherettes.
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Cry Is For The Flies starts out sounding like an even more sinister boat ride through Willy Wonka’s tunnel of terror on “Burn The Scab”. It causes anxiety, aggression, and for the uninitiated, a certain amount of confusion. It is not for the weak of heart, nor the sensitive. I very nearly sent the album back to Rara’s in defeat as I thought “there is simply no way to describe this without hearing it for yourself.” While this still holds true to a certain extent, it is not nearly as inaccessible as I originally thought. The further you dive into the album, the more human Teri Gender Bender (born Teresa Suarez) becomes. The more you listen, the more it grows on you.
The track that finally caught my attention while I was having my writing meltdown regarding this record was “Your Weakness Gives Me Life”. I could hear a comparison deep in my brain trying to get to the surface but it was buried somewhere in the 90s. Then after a few more listens it came. Veruca Salt was very good at doing the same thing as Le Butcherettes: driving crunchy guitars through the verses before letting it all go in a big, wide open chorus.
Do away with the sugary sweet melodies that Veruca Salt would often fall back on, and replace them with some of the darker moments in Tim Kasher’s brain while writing Cursive’s The Ugly Organ, and I think that’s a pretty accurate description of Cry Is For The Flies.
Henry Rollins makes a spoken-word guest appearance on “Moment of Guilt”, and Shirley Manson (of Garbage fame) guests on “Shame, You’re All I’ve Got”. The tempo on “Shame…” takes a nose-dive but it’s a refreshing change of pace and though I was never a fan of Garbage it is one of my favorite tracks.
“Poet From Nowhere” comes racing out of the gates sounding like a drug-induced hallucination in a toy factory. The guitar is absent, replaced by the quirky keyboard, and outside of the context of the record would sound absolutely absurd. However, by the time the song comes you already feel like you’ve been through such a journey that you’re really willing to accept just about anything at that point. Break your conventions down or it can be done for you in ten songs, maybe less.
“Crying Out To The Flies” rounds out the album in stunning fashion. There is plenty more to say about the music and the band as well (The Omar connection? The Colorado/Guadalajara correlation?) but I think it’s best to let this album speak for itself.
It has been a long time since an album caught me off guard like this one. First, I was genuinely disgusted. Then, I was intrigued. Then, I was elated and now I’m in love.
It’s not for everyone but it is definitely within reach for most people if you simply have the fortitude to keep listening. A+ and I’m really looking forward to Le Butcherettes cruising through town so that I can catch what I can only imagine is a fantastic live show as well.
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