Feeding Frenzy by C.H.E.W.
HARDCORE PUNK AT ITS MODERN DAY FINEST. CHEW HOLD NOTHING BACK ON THEIR FEEDING FRENZY LP AND ARE HERE TO BRING PAIN AND WAR. I FEEL THE NEED TO TYPE THIS REVIEW IN ALL CAPS BECAUSE THAT’S HOW THIS MUSIC MAKES ME FEEL. LIKE IM MAKING A STATEMENT. AND ITS LOUD. AND I’M PISSED OFF. AND EVEN IF YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND WHAT IM SAYING, YOU SHOULD HEAR IT AT IN INAPPROPRIATE VOLUME BECAUSE FUCK YOU.
…and that’s exactly how I like my music.
As the spitfire drumroll of Feed Frenzy pollute the airwaves and a good old bottle full of hardcore punk cracks open over the side of your face, leaving your teeth gripping the root of your gum for dear life as the wide open cheek wound’s blood pools in your mouth, forcing you to CHEW on your tongue as your head uncontrollably bangs to this sonic creation… I assume thats how CHEW got their name. Possibly is a scenario like that. OR perhaps CHEW might stand for something. CHEW stand for.. actually, stand against.. many things; and we’ll get to that later. Rather, I’m thinking like an acrostic stye, as in Can’t Hardly Earn Wages; or Come Here Eat Worms, or Continue Hating Economy Whores, OR maybe the answer is a simple Google search away… it actually means Cold Hands Elicit Worry, which makes sense, I’m just trying to creatively get my point across. Hailing from the only city more violent than their music, Chicago (with the utmost respect, I love that city and like them more for being from there), CHEW have created a perfectly balanced, yet utterly chaotic, modern day hardcore punk that could be stacked against the best of them. The thing is those classic hardcore bands and records are even more relevant today than they were then, which is perhaps beautifully timed irony or simply a cruel twist of fate.. time will tell.. but CHEW are not waiting around to find out. And that’s the thing you can’t say about most (if any) pop music.
Punk has a place not only in hearts and heads of the educated rejects and rebels alike, but in politics and history. Punk exceeds expectations by verbally decreasing them and spitting them in your face. Good punk gets the point across and makes you FEEL something and think something other than “sweet riff” or the next move you’re gonna pull off in the pit; it makes you use whats encapsulated in that skull of yours; out makes you think. It challenges mainstream and personal morals, ideals, beliefs, feelings, and sometimes even sexual orientation. CHEW accomplish all of the above AND THEN SOME on Feeding Frenzy. From the first easily audible lyrics on the record being “I TOLD YOU TO LEAVE ME THE FUCK ALONE” uppercutted via vocal chords of Doris Graves proving female fronted hardcore punk still hasn’t earned the respect it deserves and she’s about to change that. Being as CHEW are not a band that is afraid to change things, this is sung like a warning - and should be interpreted as such. It is not an invitation. It’s the part in every horror movie that you squirm in your seat and beg the B-grade actress to not go up the stairs as a disguised lunatic with a hardware store receipt longer than her list of high school regrets is about to plant a Phillips head through her carotid artery. You didn’t leave me the fuck alone, so I made this fucking record, CHEW Kung Lao-style hurls the LP into the face of The Man, splitting it down the middle, and sticking the impenetrable punk LP to the wall behind. THAT is how I not only imagine the attitude and inspiration to this record, but the writing and recording process as well. It is recorded with such ferocity, focus, aggression, and overly thought out arguments that if it doesn’t get you rising ups in arms then nothing will - check your pulse - because your heart might’ve been chewed out.
Female fronted punk rock is certainly nothing new but in the current climate its a bit refreshing to see a punk band from Chicago bringing hardcore music back to relevant shores and making relevant points. The songs just hit you over and over again producing the same painfully wonderful result yet it feels like its from a different perpetrator each time… different weapon.. same result. Not penetrating through the gates of hardcore but rather varying their sound slightly bringing in influences of noise, blues, thrash, and anything from the Bad Brains to Poison Idea in the mix. Feeding Frenzy is just barley over a half of an hour long, but it provides enough punches, licks, scrapes, bruises, blood-on-the-strings rhythm, and vilely fast percussion for a full discography of society-shredding hardcore. And they even have time for a mood-setting instrumental interlude on Part I of the title track and a stomp-worthy 6-plus minute epic conclusion of “Belly Up”, which should leave you just that. The record is flawless in its ability to deliver and demonstrate genuine creativity and musicianship within the confines for 3 chords and the mo-ther-fuck-ing truth, my friends. Hats off, and heads off, for CHEW.
*FELLOW PITTSBURGH FREAKS: CATCH THEM AT ROCK ROOM OCTOBER 21ST!! *
… we’ll be there.
Gym Rating: 6/5
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