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Skullflower - Fucked On A Pile Of Corpses

Fucked On A Pile of Corpses years builds upon the hypnotic noise drone of 2006's Tribulation and develops it into something totally and uncompromisingly different. Opening with bursts of noise over sustained (organ?) drone and rickety pulsing rhythm it may sound like unfamiliar territory for Skullflower but listening back to 'Hanged Man's Seed' it really sounds like the equipment is being warmed up for the impending onslaught. There's a return of sorts to the doom sound on 'Viper's Fang'. Here though, the blistering psychedelic riffage played over the murkiest of drum playing, is cast against a torrent of careering black noise. A vague trace of a melody can be found between the guitar riffs, but the whole thing sounds like early Skullflower played simultaneously with power noise.

It steps up a gear once again on 'Defiling The Temples With Bestial Lust', as the drums fall away replaced with a vicious turbulence of serrated guitars and seering noise. Glimpses of distant hollering can be heard, but they're pushed so far back to be indiscernible as noise wins over. If 'Viper's Fang' carried traces of Skullflower circa Xaman, then 'Defiling The Temples With Bestial Lust' and the following track 'Anubis Station' appear to be channelling former labelmates and noise compatriots Ramleh. 'Anubis Station' is a morass of feedback squeals and dense guitar sludge. A wall of detached hollering, more reminiscent of Gary Mundy, is caught up in the tidal wave of noise.

From then on Fucked... really becomes a noise album. On 'Fairy Knife Hell' the ferocious riffage is almost unrecognisable as it is caught up in waves of caustic bliss. I can't even tell if there are drums but I think I can hear voices, amidst the melange of twisted noise. This is Skullflower at their most brutal, their most unflinching. Even here, though, amidst the noise varied sounds still seep through, though it's clear that noise usurps ensuring it's my least favourite track here. 'Tantrik Ass Rape' arrives in a series of explosive blasts. Noisier and more formless than the preceding tracks it continually explodes letting loose frequencies amongst the continual blasts of molten noise. It's so formless and noisy everything is obliterated for noise. The effect is so dizzying you yearn for a bit of space to earn respite from the unremitting noise. And for that you have to wait for 'Sleipnir', the final track, which brings it all together binding unflinching black noise with melodic guitar tones.

Even though this has been described as the "most remorseless, brutal Skullflower ever" I don't think I was ready for this. Noise has always been at the heart of Skullflower but for whatever reason, Fucked On A Pile of Corpses is riddled with an unhealthy dose of power noise. Maybe Matthew Bower is revisiting his early days as part of the power electronics scene, or picking up on the interest in Broken Flag but the inclusion of all-out noise certainly adds another facet to the group. Where the noise functioned as euphoric bliss on Tribulation, Fucked On A Pile of Corpses is just one noisy fucker. Tribulation seemed to mark a highpoint in the noise stakes for Skullflower but Fucked On A Pile of Corpses can lay claim to be the most unremitting release from Skullflower. It's also the shortest and most direct. There's definitely a place in your Skullflower collection for this. For more information go to www.coldspring.co.uk