Albini-level sonic tumult can make a compelling case by itself with or without a song’s lyrical intent. And if said tumult offends? Well, you were likely its target. As the tilted and persistent rhythm of Back in the Room exhibits well Neu!’s belief in listener immersion through repetition, Hey Colossus, the noise-oriented rock unit responsible for the battery being addressed, also revel in the perverted evangelistic tone of The Jesus Lizard. An attack on the senses? Only if you’re the target. The Guillotine, latest LP and third Hey Colossus release for Rocket Recordings, is an eight-song trove of volume, emotional density, and social critique, its commonalities with sounds cultivated by labels like Touch & Go and Amphetamine Reptile not so much evidentiary of retread as they are respectful and refreshing pulls from an era of dissonant rock plentitude.
Introduced by the red herring string play of Honest To God, a song I’ll admit had me believing momentarily that I’d be hearing an upbeat little ditty meant to set me mentally adrift in the ecstasy of a sun-drenched day, The Guillotine’s thoughtfully penned commentaries are delivered with an impressive weight and equally impactful commingling of guitar interaction. The album’s notable heft garners most of the attention at first listen, but further dives into the material reveal the arrangements at work...