“I always wanted to do a multi layered drum band. But not in a jam band kind of way, in a crushing tribal way.” So says Erik Larson of Axehandle, a power trio unlike any other. Indeed “Power” is the first thing that you hear on Axehandle’s debut. Recorded in true stereo, you will feel the band surround you every step of the way. At times it’s a head splitting drumming overload, and others a slow building melody of doom ladened guitar waves. “We wanted to create a sort of soundscape with the songs. Not just a whole lot of banging on drums with some heavy riffs laid over the top, but a whole experience that takes you to the place the lyrics are describing. Kind of like a bad trip that you don’t want to leave.” A statement hard to believe and yet irresistible when considering the lyrical topics of revenge, serial killers, mutilation and general human carnage set to the lush and dense musical backdrop of such songs as “All Redheads are crazy” or “Pulp”.
Consisting of Erik Larson (Drums/percussion/Vocals), Bryan Cox (Drums/Percussion) and Ryan Lake (Guitars/bass) this may appear to be an Alabama Thunder Pussy side project (which technically it is) but don’t be fooled. Axehandle is a chance for Erik and the boys to examine ground untrodden by ATP and expand beyond the confines of genre and style and create something totally unique.
Recorded by Vince Burke (Guitarist for Beaten Back To Pure) in a weekend of beer fuel fury, Axehandle’s debut album is a disturbingly addictive barrage of musical blood avarice. Axehandle draws the listener in with their tribalistic layering of rythmns and then swings dynamically between melody and bone crushing metal the way most bands move from chorus to verse. Don’t be fooled by the sense of security a song title like “Self Help” can provide, for underneath is something sinister as in the message behind the beautiful ballad “The damage that can be done at the ocean.” It only gets more addictive when coupled with songs like “Face Down” and “Fine Food”. It’s like being invited to a dinner party and then finding out you’re the main course. You have been warned. Meet Axehandle..
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