15. Loma Prieta, Dark Mountain (‘Exit Here’)
Loma Prieta - meaning ‘dark hill’ in Spanish - are a three-piece San Francisco screamo band, but ‘screamo’ not only meaning ‘real’ screamo (and thus many people not wanting to use that word) but also a throwback to the 90s spazzy/San Diego hardcore; the frantic, abrasive, speedy destruction of sound in the name of melody and expressiveness. This 8-song, 15-minute record continues a similar path to the only slightly longer 2008 LP, Last City, which I only discovered at the start of this year (hence not making it onto last year’s best of). Whereas Last City was abrasive to the point of continuously breaking down into Honeywell-like noise, Dark Mountain does this far less frequently. It still does it - especially the feedback screeches - often enough to be awesome, though.
Without going into why I don’t like much US screamo of this decade (too technical, mostly), the indecipherable vocals of Loma Prieta only add to the feeling that this could be screamo from any time or place in its much-maligned history. The vocals in screamo are generally indecipherable, of course - that’s the point - as it helps aestheticize the vocals as another instrument, one which conveys passion and fury alongside the distortion-heavy guitar or pounding drums. More people should listen to screamo, for this reason. It has that cathartic quality I understand people get from metal, but while the latter has rarely if ever been anything but tedious for me, screamo when done well is one of the purest forms of music I know.
Posted 3 years ago 20 plays