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Glassjaw shows no signs of rust on ‘Material Control’

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Anie Zaleski

Four stars

Glassjaw Material Control

Fifteen years after the release of post-hardcore totem Worship and Tribute, the Long Island rabble-rousers of Glassjaw are finally back with a new LP. And the mighty Material Control shows no signs of rust: Corrosive guitars and molten basslines push one another on the throttling, discordant “New White Extremity” and the Deftones-esque “Shira;” “Closer” hews toward thrashing hardcore with metallic edges; and smears of distortion mar the doom-laden “Golgotha.”

The record’s sequencing adds to those abrasive moments, with Material Control building strategic breathing room into its shuddering aggression. The languid “Strange Hours” hypnotizes with straw-dry dub beats; “Bastille Day” is a droning, Indian-influenced instrumental with clattering percussion and handclaps; and the sub-90-second title track combines bursts of distorted math-rock with ominous drums. Vocalist Daryl Palumbo, meanwhile, alternates between conspiratorial, melodic wails and throat-shredding bursts of anguish. Brutal and uncompromising—in very deliberate ways—Material Control plays like a soundtrack to existential dread and clawing anxiety.

Tags: Music, Album
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