The sandy coast of Santa Cruz, California harbours some of the angriest Hardcore around. On July 24th, Gulch released “Impenetrable Cerebral Fortress“. Their latest release is a high energy string of 8 rapid-fire songs coming in at just under 16 minutes. It’s provoked anger bursting between super tight drumming and glaring guitar riffs.
“Impenetrable Cerebral Fortress” begins with a brisk tune of the same name. There’s a quick retch, a hasty wave of rolling drums, and heavy, squealing guitars that rupture into a pummelling wall of sheer displeasure and ferocity. The next track, “Cries of Pleasure, Heavenly Pain“, begins with a cut scream, and a distorted, wavering guitar that sounds like you’re hearing it from miles away through a massive sandstorm. The drums pick up pace and we’re thrown to the floor with force. Up next is “Self-Inflicted Mental Terror“. This track starts off with subtle malice, then the retching vocals come in and the whole song picks up as if it is angrily shuffling towards you, knives out.
The riff on “Lie, Deny, Sanctify” comes tumbling in like a wrecking ball. The drums make their way into your chest, replacing your heart’s natural beat. “Fucking Towards Salvation” opens up with a deep gallop and lurches into a spiteful call-and-response stomp. Wheezy feedback leads into “All Fall Down The Well“, a high-energy rager. You can hear the throat of the vocalist being torn to complete shreds. “Shallow Reflective Pools of Guilt“ is rhythmic venom. The EP closes with “Sin in My Heart“, a cover of the superb Siouxsie & the Banshees tune. The jangly downfall of notes begins the song and is turned into a grittier version of the original. This is the pissed off music that 2020 needs.
And any band that does a Siouxsie cover is a band that immediately has my heart. You could listen to this entire EP twice on your way to your day job.