Jan 5, 2010

Boris. Smile. Live at Wolf Creek.

Back when I was in film school—a thousand years ago—the reigning theory was that Godzilla represented a nuclear-age version of divine punishment. Japan's shame for a "dishonorable" sneak-attack on Pearl Harbor and ultimately for losing the war is paid for through Godzilla—who is both created by the bombs dropped on the island and periodically revisits that destruction upon them. Of course, Godzilla is also seen as a tragic hero by the Japanese, something that doesn't make sense if he is only there to punish them. It's likely that he doubles as a figure for Japan's post-war feelings of powerlessness—feelings that it cannot act out turned inwards towards themselves.

As a band that sounds like they may have been breast-fed by Black Sabbath, Boris have always walked with a dinosaur sized footprint, steadily redefining what it means to be heavy on countless records and eps. Veering from gravity-warping, sludge-tastic drone to their trademark garage-rock, psych-metal sound (all motorcycle chains and black exhaust), Boris have their monster heart set on tearing the knobs off the amplifiers and sonically pummeling you into gooey rapture. Captured live, they tear hell for leather through an album full of hook-laden, riff-shredding, head-banging, devil-horns-hands-in-the-air, rawk. Absolutely brutal takes on Buzz-In and Pink are larded with atmospheric drones and a gorgeous, fragile rendition of Rainbow.

But then...oh god...then they got to the final two tracks—a transcendent, near-thirty-minute exploration of [ ] preceded by You Were Holding an Umbrella—that positively crush everything that came before them. I don't know what Umbrella is actually about, but if Godzilla himself had composed a song to capture the interplay between his heartbreaking sorrow at having to destroy his homeland and his radiant pride in restoring its honor by being an agent of divine retribution and national seppuku, he couldn't have done a better job. This song could raze entire cities.

It's a double album, but the second disk was too big to fit into one download, so I had to split it up.

Disc 1
Disc 2.1
Disc 2.2

Boris' official website

Boris on myspace

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