• locust The Locust (11-track CD, £6.75)

    label: G.S.L.

    Gold Standard Laboratories does everyone a huge favour and reissues the little EP that could suck your brain out with a straw, the Locust's self-titled, nine-song, seven-and-a-half-minute 7" debut. The set bled through numerous printings upon its initial 1996 appearance and here has been fully remastered, featuring two extra tracks in "Ass Gravity" (:43) and "Keep Off the Tracks" (:47), which were formerly available only on wacko, hard to find compilations. As for the rest of the record (all five-plus minutes of it), it's entirely essential. "Halfway to a Worthless Ideal Arrangement (An Interlude to a Discontinued Sarcastic Harmony...Yea Whatever)" and "Prepare to Qualify" take a truncheon wrapped in coaxial to the steaming guts of hardcore, piling them steaming in a rusty cask marked "death metal/screamo." While the Locust were clearly noisy masters even then, the EP also has its moments of bizarre clarity miniaturized and/or compressed, of course. Check the Quintron-like organ jag that slices through "Kill Roger Hedgecock"'s aural shrapnel or "Off By a Long Shot", where the two vocalists become banshees screaming fire over seemingly unending histrionic crescendos. The minute-plus "#99" is the longest track here, offering some respite from the tension with an unsettling hall of mirrors populated by echoing electronics and a yelling head. It's genius. Pure genius. Tracks: 1 Halfway to a Worthless Ideal Arrangement (An Interlude to a ...) 0:44, 2 Prepare to Qualify 0:31, 3 Kill Roger Hedgecock 0:46, 4 Pain Reliever 0:27, 5 Off by a Long Shot 0:42, 6 Cattle Mutilation 0:27, 7 #99 1:19, 8 Head Hits Concrete 0:27, 9 Hairspray Suppository 0:43, 10 Ass Gravity 0:47, 11 Keep Off the Tracks 0:33.

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