Drumcorps ‎– Grist


Versions (4)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
adn 70, Crock013 Drumcorps Grist(CD, Album) Ad Noiseam, Cock Rock Disco adn 70, Crock013 Germany 2006 Sell This Version
none Drumcorps Grist(11xFile, FLAC, Album) Not On Label (Drumcorps Self-released) none US 2006
adn70d, Crock013 Drumcorps Grist(11xFile, MP3, Album) Ad Noiseam, Cock Rock Disco adn70d, Crock013 Germany 2006
adn79, vrock009 Drumcorps Grist(12") Ad Noiseam, Cock Rock Disco adn79, vrock009 Germany 2007 Sell This Version



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March 15, 2010
referencing Grist, CD, Album, adn 70, Crock013
As a long-time fan of Aaron Spectre, I didn't know what to make of this album the first time I listened to it. Grist is different enough from Aaron Spectre's previous work that he released it under the new moniker of Drumcorps. While Aaron Spectre's experience with drum'n'bass is evident in Grist, the album is a foray into incorporating real instruments into his pieces, and is almost easier to classify as a metal album instead of an electronica album. As he said on the FAQ page of his website, "ultimately without a living breathing sweating trembling person there in front, the sampled voice becomes another sound design element. the only way to bring the fire is to bring it for real" (http://drumcorps.cc/faq).

The story behind the concept for Drumcorps is one that should be familiar to anyone who has studied the history of technosonic music. He was raised in Massachusetts and steeped in the hardcore punk music scene in Boston. He later moved to Berlin and became a DJ specializing in drum'n'bass and dubstep, and built up an international fan base. After becoming proficient at creating electronica, he started incorporating sounds into his work from other genres that he liked. Much like how Suba was a mastermind behind the New Brazil music movement, Drumcorps is on the frontline of breakcore musicians integrating metal and punk influences into synthesizer and sequencer-based music.

The opening track of the album, Botch Up and Die, is a good representative of the album as a whole. It starts off like a typical metal album, with a distorted electric guitar and some run-of-the-mill drumwork. However, at just 11 seconds in, there's a blast of high-speed drumming that tips the listener off that none of the drumming in this album is being performed by a live drummer. As the track progresses, the guitars and the drums seem to switch between which one is more prominent, forming a duel between between the live instrumentation and the distorted snare samples. Botch Up and Die ends with compromise between the two, as a glitchy, time-distorted guitar riff closes out the track.

While there are other musicians producing breakcore tracks, Drumcorps will stand out to aficionados of the genre. Oftentimes, guitars in breakcore tracks are simply samples that have been spliced and manipulated to fit the track. In Grist, the majority of the guitar riffs are played on an actual guitar, giving an organic quality to the album that is missing from other breakcore albums. The vocals, too, mostly sound like original recordings. Instead of just trying to add metal influences to drum'n'bass, Drumcorps has actually created a symbiotic fusion of the two that will appeal to both fans of metal and breakcore. Even some of the song titles are nods to the metal bands that were influences of the album; "Botch Up and Die" and "Pig Destroyer Destroyer," for example.

I highly urge you to buy this album and give it a chance. Regardless of whether you primarily listen to metal or breakcore/drum'n'bass, Grist is going to be different enough to drag you out of your comfort zone, but similar enough that you'll probably end up rocking out to the songs. It might take one or two play-throughs to really appreciate the album, but it's worth the time investment.