Mon 17th February 2014
A collective of veteran musicians who have done time in Destructo Swarmbots, Hull and various others, and current members of Goes Cube, Strangelight, White Widows Pact and more, Cleanteeth is a noisy, but listenable take on doom via diverse influences.
Produced by Dalek supremo Alap Momin, it has that smudged, metallic thud to the sound that is like a blunt object to your teeth. It's bass-heavy and relies on neat twists and turns to ensure you pay attention. Influences range from the cerebral, like My Bloody Valentine, to more post-metal quarters, Isis, heavier parts of Jesu and scraping, unpleasant sludge. This is in particular in evidence on the delightful Shitbreather which rattles along like a cobbled-together jeep driven by a lunatic frothing at the mouth.
Elsewhere, the post metal influence runs deeper, witness the screaming hell of Stay On Target which harnesses thousand-feet high riffs and combines it with an oppressive layer of electronic noise to further its cause.
The quiet and unnerving hisses and ghostly trails of 808 beats on French Kissing Alexander Hamilton betray the glitch-core past of some of the members and have that trademark dalek-like mask of static in full effect. This makes for some much-needed space within a sound that is otherwise densely packed. the experimental and distant sounds here serve to underpin an already mysterious and brain-bothering release.
There's also delay-ridden and peaceful tones to be found on the likes of Don't They Look Like Mermaids. Gentle synth notes collide softly with samples and plumes of static to create a floating island of beauty among the heavier elements meaning this is a record of pleasure and pain wrapped into one.
Almost on cue, the rabid Beardsly rises up following this break in the storm to churn and unnerve with aplomb. Vocals here are high-pitched and turn to harsher screams as it rolls along.
It's all over in 45 minutes, which is fine as they achieve what they set out to do in grand style. The final dying bleeps of Bedbugs sum up the album as a whole, blink and you'll miss it, take repeated listens and it is more than the sum of its parts.