Taking their name from the divine god-slaying trident of Babylonian mythology, 3TEETH sets its conceptual sights pretty high. Who are the gods of modern civilization but the institutions, brands and ideologies that confine us? These grim deities may lack the ferocious aspect and deep history of the old gods, but they make up for in absolute dominance of human thought.
What weapon might slay them? What hero might wield it?
Fortunately, such cultural weapons as comedy, art and reason can still draw divine blood -- and that seems to be 3TEETH’s aim in their latest album "<shutdown.exe>." The Los-Angeles-based industrial act follows up its impressive 2014 self-titled release with an intelligent and enraged work of anarchist, counterculture magick.
As with their previous effort, the band manages to draw on the energy of older industrial and metal acts in a refreshingly new way. They’ve updated the medicine for the modern patient and I’m happy to report there’s not a lackluster track on the album.
In <shutdown.exe>, vocalist Alexis Mincolla, drummer Andrew Means, guitarist Chase Brawner and keyboardist Xavier Swafford channel industrial vibes that bring to mind such acts as Ministry, KMFDM and early Nine Inch Nails -- but this is all substructure for a fresh musical and lyrical approach. And I’d put 3Teeth’s lyrics above any of the aforementioned artists. There’s a precise brutality to Mincolla’s vocals, each phrase growled and spat like incantations in paradigm-shifting invocation. The words bleed with anti-establishment rage and cryptic messaging.
One of my favorite tracks on the album, “Degrade,” boils with a fine example of this: “Manifestations of the gun, Blackened blood on every tongue, Taste the waste of their god’s grace and spit your hate upon your young.”
Along with “Degrade,” the previously-released singles “Shutdown” and “Atrophy” are also personal favorites -- perfect soundtracks for anti-establishment rage in our modern world. The full album boasts additional treasures. “Divine Weapon” opens the album with thoroughly metal intent and "Tabula Umbra" is a driving instrumental doomscape. “Insubstantia” and “B.O.A.” are both standout tracks for the back half of the album.
Plus, I have to mention that in the track “Oblivion Coil,” Mincolla tweaks his vocal delivery in a way that reminds me of Dirty Sanchez’s cover of Soft Cell’s “Sex Dwarf,” featured on DJ Keoki’s timeless “Kill the DJ.” Maybe that connection is all me, but I love it. We need more sex dwarf in our music.
<shutdown.exe> is out May 19th and you can stream it on Spotify, buy it via the 3TEETH Bandcamp page or wherever you get your digital sounds. The band maintains a very active social media presence as well, providing much-needed antitoxins for you feed and even some serious social commentary.
So bite into some 3TEETH. You can read my 2016 interview with Alexis Mincolla right here, and let’s close out with their killer music video for “Atrophy” -- and you can stream the full album below that for a limited time.
Space Music is a continuous exploration of our expanding cosmos of sound, with an emphasis on electronic music. Sample a little of everything from past posts at the Space Music Sampler playlist on Spotify.