Post Traumatic Social Dysfunction
review published: 1/25/2016
Post Traumatic Social Dysfunction is the second album from Dayton, Ohio's Grim State. The EP, clocking in at just over 10 minutes, is a brutal exercise in metallic hardcore.
Right off the bat, opening track "Torture Ended" is frenetic and chaotic. Pounding full steam ahead, Grim State let you know immediately what they're all about; this is dirty hardcore with a metallic backdrop. A blistering drum beat leads the way through a wash of noisy, bass heavy riffs. The track moves through a mosh section and back before finishing off on a down tempo breakdown. For all its ferocity and heaviness, the track unfortunately doesn't really accomplish a whole lot.
It's roughly halfway through the EP that Grim State start to hit their stride. After "Heretic Unearthed" – a song that ends just as it seems like it's about to get going - the band move into "Culture of Vultures." With its chunky bass line, slower pace and groovy end riff, it's probably the strongest track on the record. It is also the first time that the vocals branch out. The low end growl that composes the majority of the vocal styling is complemented by a teeth gritting yell. The addition lends a new facet to the band's sound.
"Disintegrated" finds the band meshing all of its previous offerings into one. The fast and noisy meets the slower riffage, seamlessly weaving between the two, until an awkward stop gives way to one of the most interesting sections of the record. The guitars wail on a high pitched descending, almost alarm-like tone. The effect sounds akin to a siren of some sort, further enforcing the overall dystopian feel of the music.
Closing track "Deviant" is another strong offering from the band, again utilizing the shifts in sounds that Grim State excels at. Just as you'd expect, things come to a head on a down tempo chugging riff, but the band does their best to stay away from the stereotypical breakdown – another plus.
Most of the production on Post Traumatic Social Dysfunction is pretty dirty, and for good cause. There is a feeling of bleakness that comes through as it plays. Conversely, the drums are crystal clear, a juxtaposition that benefits the record's overall sound.
Bottom Line: Grim State has written a pretty solid EP. Post Traumatic Social Dysfunction doesn't quite hit pay dirt until its midway point, but once it does, it hits hard.
Track Listing: 01. Torture Endured 02. Heretic Unearthed 03. Culture of Vultures 04. Disintegrated 05. Deviant