Misanthropic Aggression, Alcoholic Polyneuropathic Freaks in Hell (Boris Records, 2020)

If you were going to pick up a drinking habit in this lifetime, there is no time like the present.

We're living in the hottest year on record, in the middle of an economic downturn and global plague. With complete environmental and system wide collapse on the horizon, all our business and government leaders can do is stumble over each other to feed you back into the meat grinder wage-labor before their stock portfolio takes too much of hit. It's enough to drive a person to drown themselves in whatever inflammable fluid they can get their work gnarled gloves around.

Atlanta crust punks Misanthropic Aggression see you in your struggles with the world and against sobriety and have released the new 3-track EP, Alcoholic Polyneuropathy Freaks in Hell, to ease your passing into liquid oblivion. An act of grace in chaotic times, delivered via durable cassette format. 

Misanthropic Aggression is part of a proud tradition of crust punks who will combine just about any sound that lacks restraint or good taste. More black metal than Tragedy and less rock 'n' roll than Warcry, but about as thrash obsessed as Laager. As their name implies, these Atlantian malcontent's sonic cross-breeding experiments are incredibly hostile sounding and devoid of human mercy.

Alcoholic Polyneuropathy Freaks in Hell is no exception to their proven trajectory. Opening with Conan-esque, cave-man riffs, it will quickly pulls you through a crack in the floor and carries you down a tributary of debris and feces to the gouging rhythm of rib-catching blast-beats, the rushing sound bleeding-gum reptilian vocals ringing in your ears as you are spit out a drainage pipe five-miles outside of town into a quarry filled radioactive water and swarming with man-eating mutant trout.

If you survive your initial listen, it will be hard not to want to tell all your friends about it. You may wish to refrain for their safety, but they're also all adults and can make their own decisions about how and when they'd like to die. 

Something else I find impressive about the track "Alcoholic Polyneuropathy Freaks in Hell" is its ruthless efficiency. The song begins with the aforementioned black metal deluge and then transitions without a hitch through lacerating Slayer-inspired solos and a mean mulching death grind on the latter half.

While Misanthropic Aggression have always excelled at, well, aggression, and integrating black metal into hardcore punk, this new single shows them expanding their songwriting beyond what was hinted on 2018's Inability to Cope EP. The release ships with the death-sludge melee "Retired from Life (Last Day of Work)" and the Immortalized road-house rock of "Blacklisted," two fantastic tracks that have been part of their live set for a while, and show off the concerted work the band has put into blueprinting their latest single.

I'm hopeful that this single is a teaser for an LP in the near future, but if no such release is in the works, I am willing to resign myself to this fact. 

Photo: Alison Benedict

Alcoholic Polyneuropathy Freaks in Hell holds up well enough on its own as a stand-alone release and soundtrack to the downfall of human civilization. If the world is to burn to ash in the heat of a heavy summer, at least we won't have to bear witness to it sober, or with nothing decent to listen to. Companion, open that beer.

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