Twitching Tongues from Los Angeles prove that it is a good time (no irony intended) for misery. If you are still looking for something to help fill the void in the wake of the premature departures (R.I.P.) of Woods Of Ypres and Type O Negative, “Sleep Therapy” (I Scream) or the newest from Moonspell are the best places to continue brooding. Twitching Tongues are a band who pay homage to various styles (doom, dark alt rock, hardcore) but still write songs that obviously mean something deeply personal to them, all while having a good time.
Yes, that’s right…a good time. For some people wrestling with relationship and mental angst over crushing riffs is the closest thing to relief this life brings.
Only Living Witness comes up often when people mention this band and I can hear it a bit on opener “I Fell From Grace Feet First”. Truly they come much closer to the sound of underground Albany, NY 90’s sabbath-core band Section 8 (especially on the classical acoustic guitar laced “Insane & Inhumane” and the intro to the title track). There’s nothing here as killer as “God Complex” from Section 8’s “Nine Ways To Say I Love You”, but “Sleep Therapy” is a very rewarding record. Sure, the vocals are atonal occasionally but like Jann Kasey Dorr it still works. Auto-tune abuse is for bad emo bands and the legitimate human takes here work much better. The album is produced but not “produced”. They sound professional and aware of what they do but it is still raw.
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I first noticed Twitching Tongues months back because they have a great merch design aesthetic. That can make or break a band sometimes, even if the music is great. I really butted heads with one band I was in because I thought the graphics sold the music far short. Think of how much better Trap Them’s dark vibe is accentuated by their bleak, edgy art. Twitching Tongues t-shirts drew me in, though I have to say I am not crazy about the album cover (looks a bit to mall goth).
But let’s get back to this record. Expect many great melodic moments with bonus Biohazard huge hardcore undertones and back up vocals. “Distance Claus” is heavy blues metal with the most serious swing on the album and a whole lot of rage. There’s a lot of anger and loneliness and disappointment, but the band manage to make the macho accusations sound vindicating and righteous instead of trite. The band is fearsome in conviction and write good enough riffs to pull off a hook like “sorry I’m not good enough” and still make it work and not be embarrassing. “Astigmatism of The Phallic Muscle” has a Type O-esque name but with vocals that sound like Down dope sick Phil Anselmo mixed w a Volbeat psychobilly metal mash up beat and some great ooh ooh back up vocals.
“Sleep Therapy” will keep you twitching with nightmares. Red eyed as hell and pretty much worth the hype. It will be great to see this band grow.