Monday, 1 March 2021

Endamori/Big Machine - Split


Labels: Sleepinghouse Records/Zegema Beach Records

Formats: Tape/Digital

Release Date: 06 Oct 2015


Tracklist:


1. Endamori - Shredder

2. Endamori - Nameless

3. Endamori - Genessee

4. Big Machine - Slow

5. Big Machine - Super Fast Awesome

6. Big Machine - Black Elk

7. Big Machine - Tom Tom

8. Big Machine - Screamo

9. Big Machine - Refused

10. Big Machine - Mastodon


I've been trying my hardest to keep up with this series, but I've slackened off somewhat, so this post is to make up for the fact that I didn't publish it last week. At the start of 2021 I committed (myself) to doing one new post a week in my Zegema Beach Records roster review series and I'm going to stick to that whatever it takes, even if it's a bit out of sequence. Anyway, this one is a pretty cool one for me as it features Manchester (UK) band Big Machine (ex Hammers/Glarus), a band I've featured here before, when I wrote about the duo's self-titled 7". I didn't know a great deal about US band Endamori, until I found out the band's connections to Cease Upon The Capitol and Dolcim (previous split mates with Hammers no less). Endamori contributes three songs to this, while Big Machine contributes the other seven, so I don't know if you can call this a proper split!


I really hope Endamori’s first song is about the character from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! What I do know is that ‘Shredder’ is a solid barrage of caustic screamo with real musicality. Both heavy and introspective/melodic, there’s a lot to dig in to. Their second song ‘Nameless’ is a lot more bass-heavy to these ears and also it takes on more of a sludge-like tone at times. It’s more of the heavier side of emo-violence/screamo and there’s some Japanese influences running through it too, if I’m hearing it correctly.


Endamori’s final contribution to this split is ‘Genessee’, which is probably their most intense song out the three here. That intensity manifests itself in different ways, with their dissonance coming up against their jangly musicality, which works in a number of ways to help build something that’s attention grabbing. Big Machine is a hard beast to pin down. Mixing heavy, almost sludgy/post-metal atmosphere with a faster, metallic hardcore edge on the cleverly titled ‘Slow’. Off-kilter at times but also containing so many other musical influences, namely grunge and psych (to me anyway). 


The aptly titled ‘Super Fast Awesome’ is exactly that, with almost screeching robotic riffs, melody and 90s emo-like screams. It’s over before you know it but it still leaves it’s mark. ‘Black Elk’ combines more of that high-pitched guitar work and wraps it up alongside more palpable, noisy anger. You wouldn’t know that Big Machine’s a duo on first listen. I doubt that ‘Tom Tom’ is about the Sat Nav system of the same name, but it’s fun to imagine either way. What it is, is a bass-filled song that actually features clean vocals, akin to grunge/post-metal once again. 


They even include a number called ’Screamo’, which is accurate, if you ever thought that this music solely contains screams. It’s bloody good though and leads to a final duo that will probably mislead you slightly.Their most chaotic, off-kilter take on heaviness is ‘Refused’, with it’s technical and head-spinning percussion and huge wall of sound generated by the guitars and vocals. Split closer ‘Mastodon’ actually does a semi-decent job of paying homage to the band of the same name, especially when they splice riffs from ‘Blood And Thunder’ into it. What an awesome way to end this release.


I hate trying to describe why one band is unique to the other on splits, as I just end up sounding stupid. Both Endamori and Big Machine compliment each other here and come at this release with the same kind of approach, shooting from the hip and asking questions later. I can’t really comment on the Sleepinghouse Records roster as I only learned of them on writing this, but in terms of ZBR’s output up to and including this release, it’s by far the heaviest.


You can stream and grab the split digitally below:-



Endamori - https://www.facebook.com/endamori

Big Machine - https://www.facebook.com/bigmacband/


Tapes can still be purchased from Zegema Beach Records via the links below:-


CAN/INTL Store - http://www.zegemabeachrecords.com/zegema-beach-releases/endamori-big-machine-split-cassette

USA Store - https://zbrusa.com/collections/tapes/products/endamori-big-machine-split-cassette


Sleepinghouse Records - https://www.facebook.com/sleepinghouserecords

Zegema Beach Records - https://www.facebook.com/zegemabeachrecords

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