Music News

CRITIC'S CHOICE

Foetus, Wednesday, July 26, at the Mercury Cafe, makes music far more dangerous than your parents could imagine: It's morbid, electric, ungodly. Jim Foetus has been pumping out material of this description since 1980, and his dense collections of loud, aggressive, methodical songs have influenced such modern-day pseudo-industrialists as Nine Inch Nails and Ethyl Meatplow. In fact, his authority is such that in recent years he's been more in demand as a producer and remixer than as a performer: Foetus worked the controls on projects by the aforementioned bands as well as The The, Pantera and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. But it's been more than just a full production schedule that has kept Foetus on the esoteric margins. His multifarious list of nom de plumes (JG Thirwell, Clint Ruin, Wiseblood, Steroid Maximus, You've Got Foetus on Your Breath, and more) has served to conceal him from his would-be fans and to scare away everyone else. Now, however, he's operating in the open. Gash, his major-label debut, is classic, uncompromising Foetus marked by guttural singing, pulsing instrumentation and an edgy, urban mood. All in all, the music is so dark that it just might be a sign of impending apocalypse. So catch Foetus before the world ends.

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Justin McLean