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High Tension : Death Beat

These Melbourne based noise makers have something about them. I actually don’t know what it is, but it’s something. Maybe it’s the difficulty people may have in putting them into a convenient box, as people seem to need to do these days. They take quite a heavy dose of punk, a liberal spoonful of hardcore, just the right amount of ballsy rock, some dredgy doom, pour it into a pot over intense heat and stir it all around. And what comes out is all of those things and none of them.


And sitting above it all is the ear-bleedingly aggressive vocals of Karina Utomo. My God does this chick have a screech on her, it’s hard to believe that she’s a tiny, slightly built Asian girl. Thankfully, she doesn’t scream constantly across the course of the album, she lays back and sings cleanly, and moodily on a reasonably regular basis.

 

You may not be able to easily categorise them, but one thing is for sure, High Tension are all grit, spit, anger and attitude. It’s caustic and abrasive, in fact it’s actually quite an uncomfortable listen. For these ears that strongly prefer the more progressive, melodic and symphonic side of heavy music, it’s really quite harsh on the ears and the psyche. But if you favour music that simply strips paint off the walls, then this is your bag.

 

BY ROD WHITFIELD 

 

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