It’s Monday and Mondays suck, so let’s grind it out with Needful Things Tentacles of Influence.
Ah, the holidays are upon us. Plenty of people hate this time of the year whether it be for emotional turbulence, the way the season sucks wallets dry, the forceful nature of joy, or perhaps the early darkness. Personally, I enjoy this time of the year simply due to its darkness. But for those that may need to exorcise themselves this season’s spirit, Needful Things may do the trick.
Born in Pardubice, Czech Republic in 1995 and known more for their splits than full-lengths (there’s only two), Needful Things are stripped down, full blown grindcore goodness. Maintaining the blasting nature of the genre, Tentacles of Influence is one explosive track after the other.
Spread out over nineteen tracks and twenty-eight-minutes, Tentacles of Influence is grind ala Nasum, Inscect Warfare and Rotten Sound. This is straight forward grindcore, no frills. Once “Constricted” clicks into place the album is a near non-stop barrage of blasts, with only minor slowdowns serving to cue new surges in energy. Tracks like “Corrupted” mix straight pummeling riffs and blast beats one after the other, constantly trading off. Others like “Money In God’s Hands” just keep going. Even when it’s “slowed down”, it’s momentum is unrelenting.
The album is also strongly old-school. Though the recording style as that razor’s edge, the album is very punk in its writing. There are still plenty of thrashing parts and sections that could open up a circle pit. “Party for Killers/Massive Killing” is one of the most diverse tracks on the record. A near beatdown-style of riffage is played before the song descends into a cranial bludgeoning.
You can determine how much you’re going to like to like this album based on how much you like blast beats. Like a lot of grindcore, it’s ripe and constant. But there’s still variation throughout and it’s doesn’t get boring. “Deprogrammed” will tell you immediately if this is for you or not. It’s heavy, pissed and fast. If you have a need to blast through this season, Needful Things might just shoot you straight into next year. And reflecting on the shittiness of this last year, that sounds like a welcome change.