Album Title: 
Ultimate Whirlwind
Release Date: 
Friday, April 4, 2014
Review Type: 

Goodness grief...it's been a while since the editor-in-chief dropped a nice Crust Grindcore Metal act into my to-do box, but with P.L.F. he sure handed me quite a job!

You see, this band from Houston, Texas was founded in early 1999 in a line-up comprising mainstay Dave Callier (vocals, guitar, occasional bass), second guitarist Ben Thomas (whom only stayed with the band for about a month, leaving behind the band's logo which they still use to date), bassist “DirtyJeff, and drummer Frank. With Dave and Frank as constants, bass duties were first handed over to one Sean Olivarez (now in Baleen) in 2002, before being relegated to Mikey T (now of Holy Money), whom was replaced by current bassist Matt in 2008. However, Matt only stayed until somewhere into 2009, and his (temporary) replacement, Marshall Sehmann (now apparently in a couple of bands: Christ Malformation, Sculpting Atrocity, and Electric Sleep – I am uncertain as to the status of the band I.P.V., in which he at least had a tenure) wasn't brought into the fold until 2011. That same year Frank left the drum stool for Bryan Fajardo (of Kill the Client, Noisear, Phobia, Gridlink and Enemies Of Inertia fame), and in early 2014, Matt returned to the band.

The band's acronym was originally an abbreviation for Pretty Little Flower, but that was changed in 2007, when the band released its official debut album Pulverizing Lethal Force, the title of the album becoming the new bandname. P.L.F. did its recorded debut via a series of EPs and split releases, starting with a 2000 split with Negative Step (issued through the small Indecipherable Crap Records imprint). It took the band until 2003 before their next release, the 13-track EP Swarming Industrial Cancer (released through the Rescued From Life Records label, on which the band would release several items in the future), but from then on things started picking up, with the renowned Regurgitated Semen Records label issuing a split 7-inch with Uzi Suicide in 2004. The next year the band found its material splattered over two split releases, the first a split 7-inch EP with the infamous Unholy Grave (on RFL Records), the second a 12-inch (45 rpm) split EP with Bizarre X (on Vulgar Records). In 2006 then, RFL Records released the compilation Complete Grindcore Annihilation, including no less than 50 tracks (obviously including some previously unreleased material and/or demos)! Prior to the release of their official debut full-length, the band still saw the release of split 7-inches with Disturbance Project (2006; through Psychotherapy records) and Mass Grave (Jan. 2007; Endless Sprawl).

It would take the band more than a year after their name-change (and release of the debut album) to come up with new releases, but then there were suddenly two of 'em in the same month of Sept. 2008: first a split 7-inch with Mesrine (through To Live A Lie Records) and later in the month the band's sophomore album Crushing Fury Of Bastardization (issued through Cyness Records). It then took the band no less than 5 years to come up with its third full-length, but in between they again released a series of split releases: starting with a split with In Disgust (June 2010; Regurgitated Semen Records), the band went on to share 7-inches with Cyness (Jan. 2011; Regurgitated Semen again), Downtrodden (Sept. 2011; To Live A Lie Records), Subcut (Sept. 2011; RFL Records) and the infamous Nashgul (Feb. 2012; Bones Brigade Records). In 2013 then, the band released its third full-length Devious Persecution And Wholesale Slaughter, through the small yet renowned label Six Weeks Records. They followed that up with a split 12-inch with Birdflesh, issued in Feb. 2014on the Haunted Hotel Records imprint, before unleashing their 4th full-length album onto the unsuspecting Earth. Since then, the band has already released two new split releases in May of last: the 5-inch Grind Down White Pride with Suffering Mind (Power It Up Records), and the 7-inch Season Of Velocity with Dead Instrument (through the Crucificados Pelo Systema imprint).

During May and June, the band undertook a European tour, taking Dead Instruments on tow, but that's about all I know of the band's touring, future or past!. If you missed that, but would like to get an idea of the incredible racket the band makes...let me rephrase that, because even if the band has pummeling drums, pounding bass and a guitar sound which is somewhat sharp overall, the guys do change the pace within a song quite frequently. I mean, the generally fast played tunes dó have less speedy passages, you see...and overall the music is certainly not devoid of a certain degree of melody. Sure, it takes a somewhat seasoned music fan to be able to analyze the band's music, or a nut-case headbanger type of Metal fan to enjoy it. You know, these guys bring you a total of 15 tracks in less than 25 minutes, and that's a lot of different melodies to stomach in such a short time. Then again, when you put the cd-player on a loop, you can listen to the album twice in an hour, and that way one either gets under the music's superficial overall noise factor, into the melodies underneath, you know (I mean, even trying to understand the mixture of growled and occasionally screamed vocals is simply beyond my competences), or gets a terrible headache (keeping in mind that one might always start to play another album when that event comes into play).

For a foreplay of the latest album, let it be known that it is posted on SoundCloud, so you can go and enjoy it there. For older material, check (www.) reverbnation.com/gulfcoastgrindcore, or even YouTube. Of course, this is Grindcore with a Crusty feel, best enjoyed by those who actually like that type of music, eh?