LAWNMOWER DETH - “Blunt Cutters”

By Dark Starr

I've heard of this band for a long time, but this is my first time hearing them. I had heard that they were thrash metal. I don't think that classification fits other than the last song here. I'd consider them to be a hardcore punk band. Mind you, the difference between those two types of music is a matter of degrees over one line or the other. I'm reminded of things like GWAR and STORMTROOPERS OF DEATH in a lot of ways on this, and both of those bands similarly lean near the boundary of the two styles. Both of them have a lot of humor in the mix, too. That's true of this, as well.

As you might expect of this type of music, parental advisories are prevalent. In fact, they are so common here that I haven't put them on individual tracks, but instead am issuing a blanket one. It should also be noted that the songs are generally very short - so short that an album that runs quite a bit less than 40 minutes has 18 songs. This is all very entertaining, and I suppose it is worth noting that the production quality is definitely higher than what you expect with hardcore punk.

Some highlights include "Into The Pit" which has some some thrash sides to it. Overall I'd consider it hardcore punk, though. It's furious, fierce and just plain mean. It does turn more purely metallic at points. "Swarfega" has an interesting start and stop thing at play. The arrangement is tastefully strange with its changes. The hooks on "Bastard Squad" are oddly infectious. The whole thing is on fire with its raw ferocity.

Seriously pounding and angry, "Good Morning, Phil" is a screamer. "Bobblehead" is a cut that has some seriously catchy hooks. It is a great tune for the pits, as well. Now, the screamer titled "Raise Your Snails" does land more on the metal side of the equation in a lot of ways. It's a powerhouse that's one of my favorites in here, in part due to the particularly meaty riff driving it. Drums lead the title track out, and the rest of the group join. It's another powerhouse screamer.

"Space Herpes" is a frantic thrasher that is less than a minute long. It's fierce. "Power Bagging" is more metallic in its driving power. Even more of a metal song, the closing "Agency Of COB" has so much class. There is a spoken piece, a narrator or newscaster, telling a science fiction story at the beginning. The cut turns out to more of an epic metal thing for the main vocals of the song. At over four-and-a-half-minutes long, this is the epic of the album, by a long shot. It's also my favorite song here. It has some serious old school thrash built into it at times. If the whole album were like this, I would have landed it under heavy metal.