Curmudgeon - Amygdala (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick


Amygdala (2013)

IFB Records / Not Normal Tapes

Across their two excellent 7-inch records – 2011's Human Ouroboros and last year's self-titled effort – Boston's Curmudgeon have laid out the basics for their plan of attack: Heavy, sludgy riffs that burst into a high speed attack, with vicious, larynx-shredding vocals railing against the injustice so prevalent in our society. Now the band have released a 12-inch EP in Amygdala that further builds on their sound.

On their self-titled EP, Curmudgeon switched things up from their typical approximately one-minute ragers with the five-plus minute closer, "Dysmorphic." While this record doesn't contain anything quite that long, the band do come off as more comfortable while exploring longer compositions, which in many cases gives them time to really build destructive slabs of hardcore.

Aside from breaking the 2-minute mark more often, the band haven't changed up too much. They're still mad – really mad – about rape culture, sexism, patriarchy and animal cruelty. The evils of this world are in focus, and the music matches the righteous anger in the lyrics. But the lyrics also touch on the personal, such as on "Severed," which lashes out at a family that is anything but familial, and rejects them by saying point blank "I refuse this bloodline... break the nuclear family mold."

Curmudgeon are a band that continue to grow and evolve, even in the somewhat limited constraints of powerviolence. Amygdala finds them in fine form, stretching out and expanding their songwriting, to great effect. Their strongest release yet.