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Insect Sex Act

A Fist Full of Panties, For a Few Panties More, or Once Upon a Time in Your Panties

Reviewed by Greg Beets, Fri., April 4, 2014

Phases & Stages

Toting a title worthy of Fiona Apple, Scratch Acid guitarist Brett Bradford leads Insect Sex Act on a muddy combat crawl through groaning, twisted narratives that cinch the zeitgeist of sun-baked noise-punk at the cusp of its autumnal years. The veterans of ISA channel the heady thrall of Woodshock-era Austin (1981-2001), but with more attention to form and structure. Bradford's tightly wound distortion defines these maturated projectiles as the able-bodied tag-team of Pocket FishRmen bassist Jason Craig and Ministry drummer Max Brody provide rubber-burning muscle. Malevolent highway mirage "Road Toad" sets the scene with driving urgency, then yarn-weaving vocalist Richard Alexander gets a bad hand from the devil masquerading as a club owner in "No Deal." His rapid-clip spoken-word combines a vintage seeds-and-stems drawl with the cadence of an overstimulated scenester who raps incessantly into your earhole even as bands play at full volume. "Gravy" marries dissonant doom to a flag-waving culinary lyrical sentiment distended from Crust's "Chemical Pattie" prior to Devo's "Gates of Steel" getting gloriously reimagined. From the brim to the dregs, not an early bird special in sight.

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