Gum takes tooth – Silent Cenotaph
Irregular plates within our minds, a slide to a nightmare conveyed through messages of well studied melodies and mind-blowing tempos, all mixed with music skills that go beyond rage.
It’s a mathematical figure, an algorithm that explodes in a thousand images, like the broken mirror of this world, and it becomes the exact feeling after receiving bad news. I definitely don’t mean this in a negative way, this is a first impression awoken when I listened to Silent Cenotaph, by Gum Takes Tooth (that band name sounds like a synonym of ageing).
These are emotions brought about like a chain reaction, first arising from 2 powerful tracks coming from the entrails of good (thrash?) metal music. No pretensions, just honest feelings of rage magnified through a big explosion. The two opening tracks of Silent Cenotaph are definitely two exceptions of what this album expresses and sounds like.
The words I found this time to describe this whole album go completely to an ethereal concept, where the two initial paths are nightmares with persecutions involved, as well as crises, just trying to find a way out.
‘Strychnine Machine’, the 2nd track, involves a series of screams as attempts of waking up from that bad dream. As the song closes, all madness is gone with a big final scream, like knowing you’re safe and warm in your bedroom and whatever that was haunting you is gone. I loved that scream!
This is definitely a transition, where all tracks are trailed for a better experience of leaving all earthy matters, then slowly and smoothly ascending to the sky.
‘The Earth’s Mantle Colonised’ includes bells ringing, as part of the final wake-up order, which rather becomes a call. Vocals are completely distorted and it’s definitely impossible to understand a word. This track features voices like Gregorian chants, which are also an earthly attempt to communicate to the highest concepts in human culture, like mantras that try to forget this human and mortal shield.
After this mantra fades, there’s the big affirmation to our culture: we see the world through the eyes of our very own context; in ‘Nomad/Monad’ I hear xylophones as played in Mexico. As the track unfolds, it takes the shape of a tribal tune with interesting and paired percussions, a deep dive into the unknown.
Adrenaline rises up again as tracks take again their electronic words and mantras, encompassed with percussions that go higher and even more intense as tracks advance. We had 2 tracks of peace, and the subsequent ‘Peace in your middle Yeast’ clearly states this cannot remain.
‘Tannkjøtt’ is a dense electronic atmosphere, rather apocalyptic, through guttural sounds, powerful percussions and a constant beat. Peace, always invaded by warfare.
Slowing down in the middle of chaos, like warfare machines eventually out of order, the sounds of a final scream for survival and lament for the damage experienced are expressed in a deep thought. A hard and metallic gaze explained through the penultimate track, ‘Rise from the Peat and Walk’.
In this story there’s no happy ending (‘Hermaphrodite and Nourishment’), it eventually shapes a path to another mystery, as life itself. There’s never an end, but a beginning to something even stranger. The sound of crystals, urban percussions, and electronic complements become a hard ‘rendu-compte’, like trying to emerge from the ashes all passions and ambitions left.
This album is the expression of straightforward, no soft introductions needed. This is how life becomes a big tangled web, where all feelings, reasons and passions are represented through each and every carefully selected sound that make every song. It’s a good catharsis, like a shot of stamina to your synapses, always trying to find alternative paths to reach your intention.