"Know How To Carry A Whip"

By Lord Randall

Ah, the mid-teens are upon us. Do you remember your middle-teenage years? I barely do, but one thing  is clear. I was musically schizophrenic. Being raised in an ultra-fundamentalist Protestant family, I had a begrudging appreciation for hymns and shape-note singing, but at home I would steer drunkenly from IRON MAIDEN to MARSHALL TUCKER BAND, colliding with NICK DRAKE, only to end up in a four-car pileup with MINISTRY, T.S.O.L. and the HAPPY GOODMAN FAMILY. And I didn't see anything wrong with it. Still don't. 

So when CORRECTIONS HOUSE throws the pummeling of COP SHOOT COP, the bleak fragility of SONGS: OHIA and resin-caked BUZZOV*EN riffs into a woodchipper, maybe what comes out doesn't sound as “wrong” to me as it should. Nobody ever told SISTERS OF MERCY to “get a real drummer” either, did they? Sanford Parker's meat beat(ing) manifesto of neo-tribal pulse and throb forms the foundation in a way that it didn't on the debut, while Scott Kelly's guitars lay hot asphalt over the skeletons. The saxophone blasts and industrial jazz melodies of Bruce Lamont lend an air of the dystopian to the proceedings, while prophet Mike IX alternately harangues, edifies and proselytizes, delivering his end-of-the-world-is/has/will-come message in a more (gasp!) diverse style than he is afforded in his other outlets. Slow, plaintive balladry more at home on one of Scott Kelly's solo works ('Visions Divide') fits unexpectedly and admirably on the same album as the blistering behemoth that is 'I Was Never Good At Meth', and that, friends, is what makes Know How To Carry A Whip an album both solid as a blacksmith's anvil and emotionally cathartic as walking out of your latest rehab stint. 

Not for everyone by any stretch, CORRECTIONS HOUSE is for those who put their speakers in their windows facing outward over the 4am Saturday Detroit skyline. For those who put on their headphones because the world outside is too fucking hectic. For those who dare to breathe deep.