The Locustï¿½s notoriety could easily outdo their creative output. From same-sex marriages within the group, to numerous reports of fights at shows, to bizarre merchandise that includes belt buckles and puzzle-shaped seven-inches, you donï¿½t even need to hear the San Diego four-piece play to know that they are, among many things, bizarre. But with a slew of releases on such notable labels as GSL, Anti, and now Mike Pattonï¿½s Ipecac, the Locust have proven time after time that their music is just as weird as their lives are. Through employing new modes of structure, sound and delivery, the Safety Second, Body Last EP is the Locustï¿½s most diverse and strangely accessible release yet.
The Locustï¿½s previous releases have offered thirty- to forty-second songs that pack in about thirty minutes of aggression. But Safety Second employs a different structure, mimicking the classical model by providing two tracks with five movements each. Each movement has an equal share of their classic tech assault (ï¿½Whoï¿½s Handling the Death Paste,ï¿½ ï¿½Movement Across the Membraneï¿½), and drawn-out synth soundscapes (ï¿½Immune System Overtimeï¿½). The equation was pretty similar on 2003ï¿½s Plague Soundscapes, but this time, just because the songs change doesnï¿½t mean the track number does, too.
Safety Second has minimized the blast beats that were prevalent on previous Locust records, instead offering new time signatures that are even less rational (check ï¿½Movement Across the Membraneï¿½). The vocal delivery, though still dominated by the bands archetypal shrieks, is slowly becoming less abrasive. Part two of ï¿½Consenting Abyssï¿½ almost has a melody ï¿½ something never before heard on a Locust album.
With two tracks ï¿½ about ten minutes together ï¿½ of abrasive mayhem, this EP will surely satisfy rabid fans who have waited two years for new material from the band. The more accessible nature of the recording seems to deflate the sheer monstrosity once instilled by the band, but Safety Second, Body Last is marked with the progression and destructive nature that has marked the Locustï¿½s work since 1995.