Receiving the Evcharist is our weekly feature where we pair choice albums with our favorite libations. Drink from the cup of heresy. This week’s offering: Chepang’s Chatta and Sloop Brewing’s Turbo Speed.
The Tunes: Chepang’s Chatta
Let’s be honest: despite its unhinged brutality, nigh-formless chaos and other liberating aspects, grind can nevertheless often feel like an unvaried, unmemorable hyperspeed blur, something that is, paradoxically, ossified. Recent releases from bands such as No One Knows What the Dead Think, Takafumi Matsubara, and WAKE have avoided this pitfall with inventive approaches and remarkable results. With Chatta, Chepang joins this vanguard of envelope-pushing, forward-thinking grindcore. The album’s 17-minute, 13-track A-side delivers a wild and dizzying ride that not only pummels but also disorients, often bringing to mind the lunatic brilliance and ethos of Psudoku’s futuro-grind (special kudos for trusting the production of the album to the ever-masterful Colin Marston, who provided the A-side with dynamic range levels rarely encountered on modern grind recordings). Impressively, memorable riffs and sharp hooks abound even within the temporal limitations and structural confines of songs mostly clocking under the one-minute mark, each of these nevertheless full of captivating ideas and personality.
On Chatta, the hunger for experimentation, spirit of progress and blunt force join hands without neutering each other, and the inventiveness of the ideas underpinning the album never outpace Chepang’s ability to execute them with flair. You will find yourself squeezing the pulp out of invisible oranges when Takafumi Matsubara and Diwas Gurung’s dual shredding hits you in the face on “Murhka,” catapulting the song’s punky charm to the stratosphere. And how about “Andho Manis” and “Hantakari” and their head-spinning elastic fretboard acrobatics? Quite dazzling, ain’t it? The A-side concludes with the experimental one-two punch of “Antim Bhet” and “Trishna,” longer songs imbued with Zornian vibes which build on the pioneering heritage of Painkiller, manifested in Mette Rasmussen’s feverish saxophone and Tashi Dorje’s grim soundscapes. This is however a prelude to what follows on the B-side: four remixes and reinterpretations of the A-side which dive deep into the subterranean realms of gabber, breakcore and tribal dub, recalling the transition of grind pioneers such as Mick Harris and Justin Broadrick into the field of electronic music. All in all, Chatta is a tremendous leap into new territories for Chepang and I, for one, cannot wait to witness how its boundless energy and creative spark translate into a live show experience.
The Booze: Sloop Brewing’s Turbo Speed
As an avid fan of New England-style IPAs, it took surprisingly long until the offerings of Sloop Brewing (based in East Fishkill, NY) really clicked with me. Everything sounded mouthwatering on paper, but my palate invariably failed to appreciate their promise. Finally, the heavens opened when my partner introduced me to Turbo Speed, a NEIPA made with flaked oats and wheat coupled with seldom-encountered Sabro and Cashmere hops. Pouring myself a pint and closing my eyes for the first taste, Turbo Speed immediately made me recall the quintessential experience of sipping Brooklyn Sorachi Ace for the first time and reliving the marvel of taste and texture, of elements that simply should not work together but nevertheless do, in something approximating divinity. In the case of Turbo Speed, I was greeted with a taste of coconut and ripe pears, backed by a supple body and nice mouth feel provided by the aforementioned flaked oats and wheat, which provide a degree of freshness that is brilliantly juxtaposed with Cashmere’s rich, forward bite. This is the type of NEIPA that rises above and invites you to a journey of delightful taste. While their tasting room remains closed due to COVID-19, Sloop ships beer packages throughout New York state, so those of you who are conveniently located know what to do.
That’s it for this week. Your man Vince will be back next Friday to tell you all about his latest discoveries. Until then, as our newly-crowned resident prog-lord always says, be good to each other.