Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Estrume'n'tal - Neander'n'taldotdotdotdot
artworkBy now you are used to the intense energy of Estrume'n'tal, but I think this is the first album tat has really gelled. I have liked all of their output, but there's something much more compelling about this release. It's also much more tiring. The shear intensity of it will wear you out.
Picks: Meteoras, Anda, Ramcharger, Poh Do Pau, Chapeuzim, Fuzzdido, Baguncela, Redemption Surf, Neander'n'tal, Cuida Vaca, Ments, Kraft, Palavra Cruzada, Saida De Emergencia, Sulvacation, A Tampa Da Cumbaca, 13th, Kaes

Track by Track Review


Meteoras dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Stinging whammy action brigs on a most disturbing and dangerous song. Grating nervous energy that absolutely will not release you.

Anda dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

"Anda" is a loud and abrasive song with an oddly space-like chorus. At first, I did not like it, but it soon won me over. Utterly intense and harshly beautiful.

Ramcharger dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

I think there's no doubt that when Gary Usher and Roger Christian wrote "Ramcharger," it never occurred to them that it could sound like this. Huge, guitar distortion abounding, and no let up in the intensity. Where the Super Stocks used a delicate balance of sounds, Estrume'n'tal play relentlessly at full tilt. Did I mention that it's huge?

Poh Do Pau dotdotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Monster stinging chord whammy... this song rips! I'm not sure what else to say about it. Very fast, very loud, and very intense! When it's over, you'll need a vacation.

Chapeuzim dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Somewhat like sped-up Link Wray merged with Davie Allan, this song is on the fuzz pedal all the way through. Large, and very powerful. At times, it reminds me of Freddy Cannon's "Palisades Park."

Fuzzdido dotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

This is big and plundering, with a circulating riff. Angry and square-wave dark, with kindness peaking out of one corner. What did you expect from "Fuzzdido?" Tranquility?

Baguncela dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Oh my gawd! Insane, intense, panoramic... like a brutal invasion and you know the end of the world is near! Really! Huge, and very dangerous.

Redemption Surf dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

"Redemption Surf" has this playful melody line that's at odds with the intense assault of the delivery, which just adds to the compelling nature of the track. A marvelous exercise in happy punk - sort of.

Neander'n'tal dotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

The title track doesn't let up. Lowbrow grind from the Neander Valley? maybe not, but it sure is mean.

Cuida Vaca dotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

"Cuida Vaca" is a very punky instro with a classic eighties punk rhythm section. Fast and dark.

Ments dotdotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

The fluid melodic nature of "Ments" is juxtaposed against the compressed harshness harshness of the band. Really cool, and a bit more dynamic than many of Estrume'n'tal' recordings. I like this a lot!

Kraft dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Kraftwerk's "Das Model" has been covered a few times as a surf instro. This is perhaps the largest and chunkiest. Great fun.

Palavra Cruzada dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

The melody line to "Palavra Cruzada" reminds me of the Monkeys' "I'm A Believer," but is divergent from it about half the time. Intense and very fun, with lots of edge and power.

Saida De Emergencia dotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

Sirens wail as "Saida De Emergencia" launches into a dark and menacing situation. There's bad stuff happening somewhere, and you'll find plenty here.

Sulvacation dotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

"Sulvacation" is more of a riff rocker than most of Estrume'n'tal's songs, though the addition of the jaws harp and furious bongos in the break make it very interesting and fun. Like a bronco ride at breakneck speed.

A Tampa Da Cumbaca dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

A thick pulsing chord grind launches the circulating melody line. "A Tampa Da Cumbaca" is pretty in an ugly sort of way. Fast, motion oriented, big, distorted, and yet optimistic. Very cool!

13th dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

"13th" is dynamic and powerful, and would drive up your speed on the freeway. Trouble is everywhere as this throbbing monster assaults the tranquility. Very big, and with a very serviceable melody line.

Kaes dotdotdotdot
Surf Grind (Instrumental)

This is very punky, very Toy Dolls-like, except of course it's not happy punk. Furious thrashy fun with grand feedback and speedy riffs. My first listen did not hook me, but on second go-round, I was a fan! Too fun, and those barking dogs!