Daughters: Hell Songs LP

The tale of Daughters is not over yet. The mythology that surrounds the band is again being expanded as they careen towards some unknown future. But their refusal to stay buried reminds us of the first real trauma the band inflicted on the musical landscape: the 2006 release of Hell Songs. While they utterly baffled listeners with Canada Songs, the spastic, blunt screamo the Rhode Islanders blasted through on that breakneck debut turned out to only be a warning of how subversive, innovative, and unrepentant they could be. The opening of Hell Songs immediately became an iconic moment: Frontman Alexis Marshall crooning, “I’ve been called a sinner,” like a fire and brimstone preacher with a flask of rotgut hidden in his Bible. And over the course of roughly 23 minutes, Marshall’s vocals squirm, howl and rant over a storm of songs that eschew a traditional sense of pretty much everything. At times aurally nauseating, the guitars are piercing, anti-riffs that skitter and squeal around each other in demented patterns. And pulling them together is some of the most inventive drumming in extreme music -- deconstructed, shambolic rhythms played with a virtuosic precision. It would be almost impenetrable if the songs weren’t so bizarrely anthemic and obscenely addictive. We have to wait and see what’s next for Daughters but right now, fuck the future. Hell Songs is a landmark album, dynamic and unyielding, and still stands today as a revolution.