Tropical Terror EP

Written by: PP on 05/01/2009 15:51:41

Nashville, Tennessee-based Cactus's have emerged from seemingly nowhere causing a huge buzz in the underground scenes, partly helped by their nonsensical "self-proclaimed style of tropical thrash rock" description on Myspace, and partly because some very famous people are getting publicly excited about the band, ranging from members from The Starting Line and Love Drug to the producer of Sum 41 and representatives from Universal Music Canada. Truth be told, their debut EP "Tropical Terror" is worthy of all that praise and then some, as all signs point to this band exploding onto the scene before 2009 comes into close.

Speaking of explosive, that's exactly how Cactus's music is. It's as if you're listening to an animate version of Bear Vs Shark bearing all the intensity and franticness of At The Drive-In combined with the tightness and fieriness of Refused. Try and lump them in a genre and the only thing even close to describing that mess is math rock, as the entire EP is full of spastic and angular guitars, musically complicated sequences that explode into screamfests, and generally an unusually busy atmosphere for a band of this type. Throw in a nice pinch of groove and humour sprinkled on top of it all, and voila, you've got yourself a winning record.

The EP opener "Where Is My Skeleton" is a perfect introduction to Cactus's's (how the hell do you even write that!?) sound as it is chaotically played yet tightly executed. "Daddy" is much brighter with slower melody, more accessible guitar lines and a sticky chorus, kind of like "Queen Bee" which wins the chorus of the EP award by a long shot. "Perverted Shark" sounds just like "Right Now You're In The Best Of Hands"-era Bear Vs. Shark in the beginning, but soon enough RX Bandits style swift guitar shredding takes over, before it all results in a screaming blast and absolutely nonsensical--yet on some level hilarious--lyricism: "TV said to spread your legs fornication TV wants your babie's sex perverted glow of the shark is ripping you apart" - even Cedric Bixler almost pales in comparison here.

Based on all of the above, I'd imagine that a label like Equal Vision would be after these guys. Cactus's know how to push the envelope into every direction while keeping it tightly together and full of high-energy explosiveness, and that combined with great songwriting skill (and the retardedly good drummer) leads me to award them a solid


Download: Queen Bee, Perverted Shark
For the fans of: Bear Vs Shark, At The Drive-In, Refused, Converge
Listen: Myspace

Release date 06.01.2009
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