Overall Score: 8/10 Originality : 8/10 Songs: 8/10 Production: 7/10 Pros: A short and sharp shock to the system Cons: Goes by way too quickly
With a name like Swollen Teeth, along with support from Sid Wilson, and label backing from Ross Robinson & Ghostmane via Blowed Out Records, it will come as no surprise to anyone that this is quite an abrasive release.
The self titled EP from the masked quartet collectively known as Swollen Teeth, is a tooth loosening heavy and nihilistic collection of songs. Now, the easy & lazy thing to do would be to compare them to Slipknot, but there is much more this band than superficial things that could draw such comparisons.
This is a frenzied 15 minutes of nightmarish punk infused bug-eyed metal. The opening track Empty comes into frame with the sounds of sirens and anquished vocals before descending into absolute chaos. Car Crash seems like the most appropriately titled track on here, as it is exactly what you imagine it sounds like.
The eponymous track the EP & band share their name with showcases exactly who the band are in 3 minutes or less. Pained, violent & like a repeated punch to the head. It’s nihilistic and raw, which pretty much sums Swollen Teeth up.
Bike Ride has a grindcore meets hardcore edge to it, as if Hatebreed got caught up in a back alley knife fight with Carcass. Lethal brings a more straightforward, bruising approach, leaning more into the hardcore elements, serving a satisfying final beatdown to close the EP out.
Swollen Teeth as a band that is still very much in their infancy, but they display enough confidence and an impressive amount of ideas, showing off a very clear and concise vision. If they can boil those essential elements down and refine them over time they could be a huge prospect going forward, but even as it stands now they are one of the most interesting and unrelentingly dark bands to come into the seen since Code Orange started scaring the shit out of hardcore kids nearly a decade ago.
The debut self-titled project from Swollen Teeth is out right now. The EP is available via streaming services with physical copies available on Blowed Out records or the band’s own site.