You know that voice instantly, Paul Catten doesn’t do things by halves, you know that distinctive instinctive almost gleefully manic voice and that almost anguished not quite a scream thing of his, that angsty slightly high-pitched vein-bulging intensity that has run through all the fine fine bands he’s voiced since Medulla Nocte first violently burst forth back there around the end of the last century. You’d maybe think oh not again, you’ve been screaming at us for around twenty years now mate, give it a bleedin’ rest, grow old gracefully, but you see, whatever the band, that almost-scream thing of his has always been delivered with such an intense commitment, with such positive violent passion, delivered in such a very very real way. in a way that make you feel he really needs to be doing this for your good, for his good, for the good of the rather impressive band he’s fronting, yes indeed, this latest vehicle of his is good for everyone and this is very much about now.
Yes indeed, Barrabus are very definitely about right here right now, forget the history or what the four of them may have done in the past, this is new, this is fresh and this is very much now. And at a time where most heavier music is sounding a little tired and a touch too generic, this is very very welcome.
Barrabus are Paul Catten (Vox / Electronics / Theremin), Mark Seddon (Vox / Guitars / Noise), Matt Keen (Vox / Bass) and Adam Evans (Vox / Drums) are Barrabus and this is their new self-titled album (on Undergroove records). When they say “miss us at your peril weaklings” you sense that statement is only partly tongue in cheek, “After a while in avant garde land it’s time to back some more racket” said Mr Catten and yes Barrabus are intensely heavy, this is a gloriously intense racket, it might sound straight forward but there’s enough in there under the hood, enough lurking in the details, in the jabs at your head coming at you from from the shadows, in the twists and turns. This is still positively avant-flavoured, this is metal that stands on your toes and gets right in there, right there in your face, this is an album that keeps on coming and coming (and coming) at you with those secret plans and those left-field suited and booted bits that stomp on you in such a colourful way. Masters of disguise, no mere passing of time here. And Porn really does not warrant too much close examination, some of this is rather dark, some a little uncomfortable. some of it, like Kleptomania is just stompingly good, and yes, all right, some of it is just a brilliant full metal racket, but then there always the details, the stomping would be nothing without the clever detail, the devil, and the delight, is in the detail (sw) .