PSYCHO – “Vulture Church”

by Thor

Boston punks and proto-grinders PSYCHO return with their first full-length album in over six years, “Vulture Church,” featuring 18 manic tunes clocking in at less than 34 minutes total.

Beginning in 1981 as a hardcore punk outfit that got faster and more aggressive with each subsequent release, PSYCHO quickly found themselves playing a style that eventually became grindcore. And the rest is history…in fits and starts anyway. For a band that’s been around 40 years, their catalog is surprisingly thin. Taking off much of the ‘90s and almost all of the aughts probably didn’t help the cause, but they’ve been slowly and steadily releasing music again since reforming in 2008.

PSYCHO is a three-piece with each member contributing to the band’s vocal barrage. Their songs are short, fast, sloppy, and dissonant with lots of proto-blast beat, skank and d-beat vibes. “Vulture Church” is quintessential punk-grind—derived from that small window of time when PSYCHO and a handful of other hardcore punk bands pushed things over the edge, making the filthiest, fastest punk before landing on grindcore proper. It’s the sticky porno theater floor of the underground music scene.

“Vulture Church” creeps on you. It’s a jarring, irreverent, don’t-give-a-single-fuck approach to music that can be off-putting under the wrong conditions. But if the mood is right, this album is perfection. For me, moderation is the key. If you dig bands like AGATHOCLES, MEAT SHITS, and early BRUTAL TRUTH, then PSYCHO will be right up that same piss-soaked alley.