July 11th, 2011
Genre: Noise/Sludge/Doom Metal
The album cover is simple, the moniker evoking some kind of Nails copycat riding on the blackened sludge wave. Don't be fooled though. Crawl is very deserving of the title, a new Khanate-esque mutant that fans of patient, surgical heaviness will want to take note of. Crawl is one guy with a bass and drums making bone-scraping sludge in Texas unlike much out there right now. I don't remember how I came across this whether by random search or through email request but I found the link today and popped this demo on, resulting in me being surprised and subsequently squashed.
This demo is only 15 minute long over five tracks but these four minute chunks of cold sludge drag in the best way possible. Each untitled song is like a glacier collapsing on top of you, suffocating and biting with every lead-weighted strike of the bass strings, distorted and sterile almost taking on an industrial feel — the breaths of silence adding an abrupt ambiance and heightening the creepy atmosphere. All this makes four minutes feel like it's swollen to ten from the raw stomping Crawl dish out.
Very loud, machine-like rhythms through fuzz and feedback, the percussion blending with the slams of the bass into a blurry and menacing bombardment; in the slower moments its more martial. The most straight forward track is probably the first one, which breaks into a more normal gait in the middle but is book-ended by savage eruptions. 'II" and the following tracks make use of silence more before delving into the down-tuned churn that I'm very much loving. It gets really blown out sometimes which embellishes the heaviness sometimes.
Both that and "III" are songs that bend slow, plodding riffs and the rising static distortion while shaking bass lines are left to grow and rattle the soundscape apart. "IV" takes the approach of oldschool swans on "Coward" with gravel bass jerks to a halt with the drums, eventually becoming far noisier than those early influences.
Crawl have some unreal industrial heaviness on very simple terms and I suggest you give this demo a listen. They kind of give off a power-electronics/death industrial feeling but in a different context.
Crawl offers this frigid record for free on bandcamp so throw him a few dollars if you want and you can check their store for physical copies. A second record Mine Maille Shone Not The Light of Death (a live recording) is pressed on limited tapes over at Murder/Suicide Incidents, which I'm sure I'll be reviewing soon. Follow the blog. Big recommendation especially for lovers of harsh heaviness like Swans, Khanate, and Whitehorse and shit.