Schizoid is actually one J. Schizoid plus a lot of machinery and very, very loud guitars. The result is something massive and angry, somewhere between Atari Teenage Riot, Rage Against the Machine, and an exploding meat grinder. Beginning with “Two Minutes Hate” and “All Things Are Connected,” the songs bleed together in a sustained bolt of aggressive lightning — heavy beats, scrap-metal noises, loops of found sound, and horribly distorted guitars run through miles of efx are all piled upon the burnpile while Smith roars in menacing fashion. The moments I like best are when the beats go into full-tilt loop mode and the guitars do the same, such as on “Grim Prospects,” or when he seizes on a happening riff (such as the one at the beginning of “Extinct and Obsolete” or the one running through “Elitist Musings,” which starts as one sound and morphs to another before being overrun by mutant guitar and spastic beats) and uses it to lead into the sonic obliteration. “Dementia” uses carefully-chosen samples to amusing effect amid the stun-gun beat (a beat so loud that the vox is pretty much drowned out — good thing he provided lyrics, not that i can read them ’cause they’re in such microscopic print), and “It Feels Like I’m Being Raped” is a pretty impressive demonstration of how noise can be used in the service of rhythm. I particularly like the menacing wah-skronk and tiki-tiki beat that opens “Amputate”…. The overall effect is pretty much that of an American answer to Atari Teenage RIot, and it rages pretty much full-on for the entire disc — there are occasional moments of “mood” or even prettiness (the gothic- sounding keyboards at the beginning of “The Big Picture,” for instance), but they don’t last long before being beaten down and sandblasted into bloodstained paste by the jackhammer beat and tidal wave of noises, efx, and samples. Like chaos in search of a form, the album roars along spinning in all directions and unleashing jagged bits of shrapnel at every turn. Definitely a hardcore beast for those into hammering sonic punishment. This should hold you over until the next ATR album appears….
THE NEXT EXTREMES!