Four Seats For Invalides – Defy

Yeah yeah all you queers know !T.O.O.H.! and (ostensibly) love them, but these guys, THESE are the Czech grinders that everyone should be obsessed with.  You can keep your Pigsty and Alienation Mental and Negligent Collateral Collapse; I have ‘Defy’ and it’ll probably keep me sated forever even if it clocks in at well under half an hour of music.  Quality over quantity is certainly the name of the game here.  Everyone into Czech grind really should hear this stuff.

Four Seats For Invalides play (on this album, at least) very straightforward and clean modern grind with a slight electronic/cyber touch.  This touch isn’t provided through techno beats or effects-laden production, but more in the ultra-sleek, industrial style of playing, augmented by the use of a drum machine.  The guitar tone is highly distorted and growling; very grinding without losing tonal definition.  The riffing style is very simple and binary, but the melodies are hardly the centerpiece of this music.  All the material on ‘Defy’ is centered around rhythms, with those harsh, mid-era Napalm Death-derived riffs being used purely to augment the almost mind-numbing intensity of the drum machine and ferociously guttural vocals.

A lot of these tracks sound the same, just differing in little industrial intros and outros and vocal rhythms.  But since it’s supposed to be one-dimensional, brutal music, it genuinely works.  All the songs are collections of low, simple (but modern) notes which are designed to portray a mechanical, sterile society where hatred and ultraviolence is the status quo.  This isn’t as ‘quirky’ as other Czech grind, which really goes a long way to make it superior.  Four Seats For Invalides doesn’t have to use dumb vocal acrobatics or gimmicky genre fusions to get their point across: they have atmosphere and a crushing breed of songwriting, and that’s all that’s necessary.  A must-have for any modern grind fans out there.


~ by noktorn on March 24, 2008.

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