Tragedy "Nerve Damage" CDPosted on Tuesday, June 6th, 2006 @ 8:46am » permalink
But anyway, I don't think I need to bother going into any background information on Tragedy at this point, but I have to say, even as one who can wholly understand and respect their principled disregard for most forms of commerce as related to the band, holy shit can it be frustrating trying to find information about these cats when they've got new material out! I mean, shit, a couple of weeks ago when I first heard about their self-released third full-length (entirely at random via email, mind you), I couldn't find one distro that was carrying copies. I also couldn't figure out the name of the record, had no idea how long it had been out, had no idea what formats it was available on, etc. Hell, someone even told me the other day that they saw the band perform fairly recently and they weren't even selling copies at the show!?
Luckily I was able to track down a copy not long ago, and it seems to be filtering out to more and more sources at this point, so… what's the verdict? For me personally, perhaps the most interesting aspect of "Nerve Damage" as a whole is that the opening salvo of the first track, "Eyes of Madness", is complete and total Bolt Thrower worship on every level. But don't get the wrong idea, while little snippets of metal have played a significant role in much of these guys' material since long before Tragedy even formed, this album is about what you'd expect in terms of cranking out 11 tracks of the melodically aggressive socio-political hardcore/punk for which Tragedy has become synonymous.
Is it a rehash of past efforts? No, I wouldn't say that at all. The recording seems to balance the thicker punch of "Vengeance" with the rawer grit of the band's debut quite perfectly, while the songwriting is similar though more diverse in terms of branching out into just a handful of additional riffing styles/tempo variations beyond those driving power chord rhythms and their dissonant accoutrements. In a few instances I'd say the material is barely more melodic and perhaps has more of an energetic burst to its attack, whereas a few of the tunes actually strike me as somewhat darker than Tragedy's past efforts – for example the chilling piano that lays the foundation for the untitled instrumental that separates the two halves of the album.
It seems to take a little growing time to achieve its full effect for some reason, but as usual I'm more than pleased, and Tragedy is certainly the best out there at what they do – practically embarrassing most any band that has dared attempt to recreate this unique niche of hardcore/punk that Tragedy has assimilated and refined from decades of past influences. Excellent, of course.
Sick lyrics as well:
I'm no bastard's slave scarred at birth, bloodstained. Never sold, thrown away. On the surface we appear to comply only because that makes us harder to detect…
Oh, the irony of using the dreaded technological means to promote a band that's neither fond of technology nor the least bit interested in promoting themselves… but what can I say, I'm just a lazy complacent fuck, I guess. I like music and I buy records… and I think you should, too: