Sun 25th November 2007
Skultroll recently came to my attention via the ever reliable Aquarius Records. This, their self titled debut CD-R, makes a strong case for keeping an eye on the ever vibrant British underground.
Operating under the banner of 'True Sheffield Black Psychedelia', Skultroll offer up a gloriously distorted amalgamation of propulsive krautrock, blackened metal and noise. The fact that Skultroll are a duo, consisting only of bass and drums, does nothing to prevent them from saturating every available frequency in the sonic spectrum.
The drums hammer out relentless heavy handed cyclical patterns, whilst the bass churns out seasick grooves amidst an ocean of noise and effects abuse. They tackle everything from looping bass lines to full on drone, with the drums veering from strict 4/4 rhythms to freeform bursts of rhythmic abandon. Everything is underpinned by a constant haze of swirling effects and noise.
Skultroll are the absolute embodiment of that 'all meters in the red' sound, with channels clipping and buzzing and speakers buckling under the strain of malfunctioning fuzz boxes. Skultroll are like a sick and lurching LSD casualty from the 70s that somehow ended up at a Shit and Shine show. Full gain is the order of the day, which makes for a surprisingly textured listening experience rather than the undefined mess you might expect.
Like so many bands who have harnessed the motorik rhythms of krautrock, Skultroll have successfully blended these with their own more contemporary influences. As it stands this is an immensely self assured debut which boasts a rare maturity and clarity of vision. Skultroll's music is a gloriously visceral and noisy affair that I highly recommend you investigate soon. For a mere £3.00 you'd be foolish not to.