What is clear from the opening burst of riffs from album opener ‘Theme from a ‘pill popper’ is that -(16)- are about to take you on a journey of hate. Playing an ugly, caustic and unrelenting blend of sludge metal, -(16)- appear to have thrown down the gauntlet and called their peers to arms. Deep Cuts From Dark Clouds will leave all the fakes and pretenders in their wake, and by taking delight in reaching their nadir, they may have produced the definite album of their career.-(16)- front man Cris Jerue barks out on the album opener ‘What went wrong, the sky turned grey’, if the answer is a bad acid trip? That is a picnic in comparison to this record. Perhaps that’s the point, -(16)- play a blend of dark and unsettling music that will no doubt serve to bewilder and delight fans alike.
Album tracks such as ‘Parasite’ and ‘Opium Hook’, with groovy and pulsating riffs, in addition to the misanthropic lyrics; invoke a disturbing portrayal of drug addiction, failed relationships and an underlying hatred of the world. To quote Serial murderer Carl Panzram "I wish all mankind had one neck so I could choke it!" and -(16)- appear to intent on doing just that.
Undeniable highlights are ‘Her Little “Accident” which also serves as the first video from the album, “Sad Clown” and “Ants in my Bloodstream” where Cris Jerue and his band of nihilistic warriors appear to be content on initiating the Panzram choke hold. Intent on inflicting a barrage of pain with seismic drum beats, courtesy of Mateo Pinkerton, unyielding bass from Tony Baumeister, and to top it off colossal riffs, complete with subtle and off-kilter nuisances from axe wielder Bobby Ferry. This batch of songs are about as uncompromising as you’re ever likely to hear.
20 years on, -(16)- appear to be recharged, reinvigorated and ready to assume their rightful throne at the top of the sludge metal wasteland. Largely outsiders, and on the periphery for years due the emergence of New Orleans scene, Deep Cuts From Dark Clouds is a game changer and blows everything else out of the water. Unyielding, unrelenting and inexorably stubborn -(16)- have finally arrived.
Enjoy! Because once you hear this record, and despite the pain being self inflicted, you’re compulsion to press the repeat button will be too great to resist. Astonishing work of vitriolic splendour! Buy immediately. If you didn't hear me the first time, buy it Immediately!
Released by Relapse Records and available everywhere from 24 April 2012. Check out the links
below for more information about the band and the incredible relapse records roster. Also check out the video the for ‘Her Little “Accident”. It's amazing!