Skulk – Vocals
Ashley Levine – Guitars
Fernando Morales – Drums
Vern Woodhead – Bass
1. Hide Your Children
2. He Who Finishes First
3. By Hook or by Automatic Assault Rifle
4. Grind (Money Crotch)
5. Joe Candidate
7. Make it Sew
8. The Commercialism Sure Means Business
9. Proper Way to Fail
10. Add Her All
11. We, The Terrorism
12. May it Never End
Experimenting in music is something I’m always open to, and this band from the Midwest was found to be intriguing when I received their latest album: ‘Afterbirth of a Nation.’
The title alone sounds like a political or social commentary put to music and I’d certainly say Skulk, The Hulking appear both political and philosophical. That is because their primary member Skulk, began the project after studying and being very confused by the works of Nietzsche and Hume. He describes himself as a satirist creating a mythology, but that’s where the confusion with this album begins.
The mention of those two philosophers would make you picture ‘Afterbirth of a Nation’ as existential, and it did appear a bit of an existential trip as the jazzy drums kicked in and offered something funky and almost post-hardcore with the first few tracks.
According to the press release Skulk has recruited a very experienced grindcore and jazz fusion drummer and an avant-garde bassist, so if that’s your forte you’ll love the borderline rapping that echoes the struggles and woes Skulk’s mind is suffering in a day to day existence in a nation undergoing an interesting period of its history.
Mixing rap-metal with sardonic whelps of an aspiring philosopher reminded me a lot of System of a Down, so if those guys got you into philosophy, this album shouldn’t go amiss.
Given the low attention span of this critic, I would say the listener won’t be too easily distracted but overall, there were times when the experimenting went a little too far and I was bored. Therefore, this isn’t something I was overall impressed with, but I wouldn’t throw it away immediately. This is an album you must listen to several times to fully appreciate all the band has to offer.
So if you like your poetry slams and noise music and funky jazz mixed in with extreme metal instrumentation, then Skulk, The Hulking is a band worth checking out, even only for one listen, they will leave an interesting effect on you.
Review by Demitri Levantis