Local Record Review: Cerebellion's 'Inalienable'

Beat Blvd. is Heard Mentality's weekly review of local releases. If you're an OC musician or band with something new to offer--vinyl single, full length album, CD, cassette--we want to hear from you! Send copies, along with any photos and PR material, to Beat Blvd., c/o OC Weekly, 2975 Red Hill Ave., Suite 150, Costa Mesa, CA 92626. You can also e-mail us digital downloads at lbose@ocweekly.com.


Over the decades, metal has become one of the most varied musical universes around. The single term can signify any different number of approaches, and the combination of strict formalism and potential innovation is a constant balancing act. On the front Cerebellion is a solid local example--their debut album is a collection where their roots are clear, but which also suggests where their future could go next. Inalienable is definitely an album that further confirms how late 1980s thrash has had a second sonic coming; there are plenty of points on songs like "Embrace the Imperfection" and "Breach of Security" where the band could almost be ...And Justice for All except with an actually audible bassline. 

The hints of cryptic progressive rock throughout--time shifts, abstract lyrics about individuals lost in political and social constructions--further play up other sonic and aesthetic connections beyond simply cranking the amps. More than once they drop in delicate acoustic guitar breaks that are much more flamenco than feedback, especially on the excellent "Undeniable," perhaps the album's best song. Above all there's a great sense of how metal's sonic possibilities are more than ever something that new groups can easily grasp and explore--not a bad start at all for these four guys.


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