DEATH EYES: Self-titled: 12” EP

This San Diego hardcore supergroup formed following the dissolution of two of San Diego’s best, Death Crisis and Rats Eyes, both of whom had fairly storied pedigrees, themselves. Following the breakup of Death Crisis and Gabe Serbian’s exit from Rats Eyes, Death Eyes very nicely picks up where the two left off, marrying Death Crisis’ former wild-eyed, maniacal front man Alberto Jurado with the remaining members of Rats Eyes. It’s a wonderful fit for all parties involved. Death Eyes stretches their musical boundaries just a touch more than Death Crisis did, offering up a complex score of tempo and rhythm changes, slow dirges, and powerful blasts of pummeling hardcore, all of which gives Alberto a platform to show off some vocal and lyrical range. Lyrics alternate seamlessly from English to Spanish, with vocal styles alternating between an insidious, raspy, nearly spoken style, to lupine yelps and howls, to hauntingly curdling screeches and screams. Vinyl plays at 45 RPM and comes on a clear blue slab o’wax. Cover art by Mike Boston Mike depicts a demonic-looking, disemboweled Pope Benedict with upside down crosses pouring out of his eyes. The whole package, from the tunes to vinyl and the cover, are all put together quite well. This is a really solid debut effort. Looking forward to much more output from these fellas in the future. 

 –Jeff Proctor (Route 44)