(All Gone)

Two things are hard to escape when listening to the garbled nether-vibes of Crude Reznor: (1) the inescapable presence of everybody’s favorite Reznor, Trent, and (2) the palpable degradation of composition to its “hoagie sleaze” state. Make that “moistening” instead of “degradation.” Well, not really “moistening.” It’s more of a smeary concoctability than anything, a devil-may-care attitude to the whole idea of consumption. But you’re distracting me; it’s hard to concentrate on anything when you’re questioning all my “hoagie sleezes.”

Crude Reznor’s compositions don’t remotely not draw comparisons to early industrial music – they surely recall the experimental cacophony of early purveyors of the genre, replete with the requisite bizarro samples and wacko electronic touches. But if you were going to pit Trent Reznor against Crude Reznor in a winner-take-all freakout competition, I’m not sure the Crude wouldn’t outweird the Trent. The plunderphonic craziness, especially as the tape progresses, might just make Trent nuts enough to toss in that towel fairly early in the match.

And you know what hoagie sleeze is, right? It’s when you get a hoagie from a supermarket or something, and it’s gotten extra moist because it’s been in the wrapping, so the bun starts to disintegrate from the wetness when you try to eat it. It’s icky and sloppy, and it begins the inevitable decay of the sandwich at perhaps too early a point in its existence. Sometimes Vernon#30 seems moist and disintegrative, like the tape’s been stuck in a fridge and saran wrapped in with some leftover watermelon slices or something. It’s exactly the kind of post-post-production the tracks needed – they’re gross, they’re humid, they’re wonderful.

This all to say – I’ll provide some thumbs in the general up direction for Vernon#30, as it’s a weird-ass, perfectly relistenable smattering of wackjob composition. If I may give you some advice, all of you one-on-one Thunderdome-esque gladiatorial aficionados: never bet against the weirdest dude in the room. That’s the guy that’s gonna walk away with the trophy.

All Gone

-- Ryan Masteller