OLDSKULL, Breaking Bones (2009, demo)
These guys take it literal and give it back the same way. There’s a cracked skull on the cover and they title this thing Breaking Bones. The skull goes way back too, belonging to some Homo erectus rocker from the Pleistocene. Now that’s old! And it’s big too. And, although not as dumb as its ancestors Homo ergaster or the seriously knuckleheaded Homo habilis, it’s still dumb compared to us rocket scientists roaming the planet these days. So, Oldskull – Breaking Bones. Yeah, serious literality all up in this joint!
Holy cow, these Venezuelans love them some early Sodom and early Slayer. They’re probably the sort of guys who think Sodom sold out on the ultra-wimpy Persecution Mania and that Slayer went too progressive with Haunting the Chapel. While the vocals, especially on the title track, are pretty much cloned Tom Angelripper circa bowlcut bangs, musically they’re quite a bit tighter than the lovingly incompetent 1984-era Sodom. So, you can pretty much expect stock old-thrash riffs and ultra-straightforward rhythmic ideas that have been Xeroexed about 67,000 times over by now. But Oldskull’s good enough that if you were at a teenage basement beer party on the outskirts of Valencia somewhere and these dudes were playing, you’d hang out and watch. Good thing bassist Gabriel “Peluso” Burland only took lead vocals on one song, “Matter Over the Mind,” because he’s absolutely horrible. The kind of talk-singing stupidity that sucked back in 1988 when many New Renaissance bands were trashing it up, and apparently he’s single-handedly (“-throatedly”?) bringing back the magic. I wonder if these guys realize there was a novelty punk band of pre-teen kids called Old Skull that predated them by two decades? Probably not. They’re probably unaware of anything that happened in extreme music after 1985. Ignorance is bliss.
— Friar Wagner