One needs not listen to a note of this EP to know that it’s gonna be bleak—the artwork is about *thisclose* to getting Relapse charged with supporting terrorism under the Patriot Act. And certainly, the band’s reputation precedes them, Primitive Man being known for downtuned, punishing sludge tunes and terrifying horror-movie music videos. And while this might be considered somewhat of a stopgap after a whole shitload of splits, this 12” is still longer than Reign in Blood. Did I mention that it only contains four tracks?
Opening number “Loathe” is the longest, at a shade over 11 minutes. Suffice to say it starts off slowly, feedback ringing out over a sparsely-applied beat that settles into a rather unsettling groove. Vocals come on thick and heavy like a dose of Buckley’s cough syrup, sounding like a young Chris Barnes on a really bad day. You don’t hear a whole lotta Cookie Monster growls in sludge-metal, but they seem to suit this band’s approach—they even throw in a few blast beats for evil measure.
By contrast, “Downfall” comes blasting out of the gate, more black metal than anything, though it soon slows things down with some heavy stop-start riffage. “Bag Man” is more of your standard death-doom fare, bringing the likes of Coffins and Winter to mind, while the last track, “A Marriage with Nothingness” is pretty much just four minutes of feedback and female orgasms…no, really.