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Thirsty Ear

It's been far too long since ol' crazy Jim has tossed a platter at us. As I walked out of the record store, unwrapping the cellophane from my shiny new cd, I wondered what he'd been up to for lo these past six years since Gash came out. Well kids I gotta tell you. He's been working. Working on what could be one of the best albums of the year in my book.

I started listening to Foetus back in the mid-eighties. Nail and Thaw were always at hand. Back then I was blown away by the combination of pure industrial destruction melded in with huge sounding symphonic pieces and crushing guitars. Quite simply I'd never heard anything like it.

Flow forward to 2001. You've never heard anything like this one. It's hard, loud, jazzy, loungy, swingin', rockin', immense and done so well that you will be amazed. Starting with what sounds like a Ministry sample from "Just One Fix" Foetus comes roaring to life with bombastic drums and unmistakable Foetal guitar/keyboard chords in openinc cut "Quick Fix." Now what did you expect right? Not what follows I'm sure. "Cirrhosis of the Heart" is lounge. Seriously lounge. It's groovy as Hell too. I swear I wanted to mix up a martini or two. It's lounge done only the way Thirlwell could.

Okay now what's next? Each song is a surprise. The slow brutal bits of yore like "Slog", and Wiseblood's "Stumbo" come to mind on "Mandelay" but the compositions on this album are superior to much of the work of that time. Okay, then ready for some more lounge work? "The Grace of God" is a poignant (well for Foetus anyway) jazzy gem. The electronics come roaring back for "The Need Machine." It roars to life in a din of drums and distorted keyboards. "Suspect" sounds like a movie score to an evil film. It's terrific. Hey come on. Any song that has the line "I have but one regret, that I have not killed you yet" is a great song. Things slow down a bit then the ultraswing of "Heuldock 7B." This is the piece de resistance. The crème de la creme. It swings it jumps and grooves.

As always J.G. Thirlwell gets sole billing for playing all of the instruments. He gets some assistance on a cut or two from David Yow (Jesus Lizard) and Oren Bloedow (Elysian Fields). I have never had so much fun listening to a Foetus album. It's slways interesting nad usually intense but this one is also fun to listen to. Flow is the first of two albums for Foetus this year. Blow is soon to follow. I command thee. Get yourself to the record store and buy this damned thing. It's awesome.


1. Quick Fix
2. Cirrhosis of the Heart
3. Mandelay
4. Grace of God
5. The Need Machine
6. Suspect
7. Someone Who Cares
8. Heuldoch 7B
9. Victim or Victor
10. Shun
11. Kriebabe

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