The Rodeo Idiot Engine

Malaise

Written by: MIN on 14/01/2016 17:40:16

The Basque-based band, The Rodeo Idiot Engine, released their newest record, “Malaise”, in the fall of last year. Having heard nothing of the band’s previous efforts, I was honestly quite surprised upon first impression. In the span of just a few minutes on the album-opener, “Le Parfum”, you’re introduced to pumping, screeching and grinding guitars, bombastic to dragging rhythm sections, and vocals so desperate and violent that you think they just might break. The album ranges all the way from chaotic hardcore to screamo, and with this mixture, The Rodeo Idiot Engine quickly prove that they’re a force to be reckoned with.

Once you reach the third song, “Passing Daemons”, you enter a realm very similar to the kind of atmosphere you’d hear from the band Rinoa, and for a little more than a minute, everything becomes bleak. The song slowly picks up speed through the varied and unpredictable drum-pattern accompanied by swirling guitars, and suddenly a throaty shout obliterates the soundscape, yelling ”Dead can dance”. Taking out of context, this line proves nothing of the lyrics on display throughout the album, but digging further into what’s being screamed and shouted in the songs, it’s easy to tell that the band has not only the ability to make great song structures, but also an excellent lyric sheet. The opening of the same song is a fine example of this:

I listen. I listen to the screams. The ones who tear my night // The sky becomes deeper and I have long since left my mind in it // I throw up, again, my guts in a knot // A spasm makes me throw out the remains of my integrity

The album plays with many different elements, especially in the songs “Syngue Sabour” and “Thousand of Nails”, such as string arrangements and tribal chorales, and they never come off as misplaced or unintentional. The instrumental and sixth song, “Ildoak”, takes on a completely different approach as it, instead of focusing on post-metal and screamo elements which is often incorporated in the band’s songs, centers around ambient, droning noises and post-rock that you’d expect to hear on a Godspeed You! Black Emperor album. After this, however, it’s as if the album loses some of the punch it packed earlier. The remaining three tracks are still excellently executed, being the same chaotic blend of screamo-infused grind- and hardcore, but they just don’t have the same impact as the first half of the album did. “Ildoak” has an abrupt and crushing ending, and it feels like the album never really manages to reach this level again afterwards.

Despite this minor issue, “Malaise” is still an intense and devastating album that pushes many different buttons and it contains some of the best material I’ve heard on any record released last year. It’s emotional, furious, beautiful and relentless in all of its twisted glory, and I highly recommend anyone with a liking to genres ranging from chaotic hardcore to screamo to hear it.

8

Download: Passing Daemons, Syngue Sabour, Ildoak
For The Fans Of: Cult Leader, Rinoa, Loma Prieta
Listen: facebook.com/Therodeoidiotengine

Release date 23.11.2015
Throatruiner Records

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