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Friday, January 27, 2017

Review: Maggot Twat - 8 Bit Apocalypse


Maggot Twat is, as they describe themselves, a two-idiot outfit from Chicago, Illinois, completed with a puppet drummer, forming the most awesomely stupid metal band in the universe. And man, are they spot on with that description. Born in 1998 from the twisted ideas of two brothers, Pete and Dan Manzella, nicknamed Pizzer and Spam Manwhat, the Twat’s prime goal, or maybe even their ethos, is to more or less mock the tough, serious and angry side of death metal. Between them the two divide all tasks within Maggot Twat when it comes to playing or singing evenly. Nevertheless, when in need of help following their quest the puppet drummer, called Dickpancakes, is always ready to chip in some of his drumming skills. Despite being around for almost two decades not many people have ever heard of Maggot Twat. The reasons for it are quite simple: their type of music is not exactly well-known, let alone sought after and on top of that they have only released three albums so far. The first cannot be changed easily and the latter won’t change with this release either, because it’s a remake of their 2006 release with the addition of just one new song, the album closer ‘James Brown Ointment’.

So what type of music do they actually play? Well, to be honest, I have no clue whatsoever, which undoubtedly is exactly what they intended to achieve. I suppose the first thought you had when you read the title of the extra song is an excellent indication of it, but if I had to explain it in a more review-like manner the best description I can come up with is twisted death metal with some thrash influences mixed with a large, no, a huge dose of weirdness, consisting of tempo changes interspersed with all kinds of weird sounds and samples. Imagine playing a 1990’s Mario Bros game with metal inspired music as soundtrack. Happy death metal if you like. Hard to imagine? Definitely, but don’t let that stop you from giving this a try, if anything this will bring a smile to your face regardless your musical preference. These guys are never serious and neither should you when giving this a spin. You’d be challenged to stay serious anyway with song titles like ‘Raped By An Ape’, ‘I Fucked A Train’ and ‘A Vampire Bit My Balls’. And trust me, the music perfectly fits those titles. If Maggot Twat would have laws, there would probably be only one: Have fun!

Does this mean this release is a meaningless piece of nothing? No, it does not, even though many people will probably disagree. Underneath all silliness and revelry it’s clear these guys do know how to compose and play music, displaying their skill time and time again. The riffs are fast, tight and heavy, the rhythm section at times inimitable, the vocals vary from screamo to deep grunts, everything you expect from a quality metal band. It just never lasts that long. If you want a good taste of what the guys are capable of, try album opener ‘A Vampire Bit My Balls’, the machinegun-like ‘I Fucked A Train’ or, if you can overlook the weird noises, the raging ‘Sexy Plants’. So all in all this is a re-release that will not be everyone’s favorite due to its satirical approach of music, but it’ll brighten your day anyway, as long as you don’t expect a full-blown death metal album. There’s no use in rating it either, simply because there’s nothing to compare it to. S.O.D., M.O.D., Green Jelly and the likes roughly have the same modus operandi, but still they’re nothing like Maggot Twat. I consider this release nothing more or less than a fun way to spend some spare time and so should you. I feel that is exactly how it was intended. Oh, and as for the new song: It fits the album like the proverbial glove. Judge for yourself and see if you can keep yourself from grinning every now and then.

Written by Henric van Essen

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