Graf Orlock - Destination Time Yesterday (Cover Artwork)

Graf Orlock

Destination Time Yesterday (2006)

Level Plane

Graf Orlock calls themselves "cinema grind," and if that term doesn't make sense at first, it will once you've heard how many movie samples they've crammed onto Destination Time Yesterday. Seriously, they've probably set some kind of record here for most movie clips on a single record. These guys really like action movies, and they combine their love of film with technical, grind-influenced hardcore kind of like Tower of Rome or the Great Redneck Hope. They're completely ridiculous, but I mean that in the best way possible.

It'd be easy for detractors to write off Graf Orlock for being gimmicky, but to do so wouldn't be at all fair or accurate. They're able to have fun while taking themselves seriously enough to avoid sounding goofy. They know how and when to shred, but they throw in a tasteful amount of chug too, and they've got a tight sense of songwriting most grind bands lack.

Graf Orlock rips through Destination Time Yesterday at light speed, and while they do blast out a lot of hyper-technical noise (think Dillinger Escape Plan circa Calculating Infinity), they throw in more than enough surprises here and there to keep things interesting. Songs like "50 Year Storm" and "Dutch and the Demon" show off the band's ability to thrash at maximum levels without losing their dynamics, while "Massacre! / Main Title" mixes up blastbeats with chugworthy breakdowns and closes out with some gang vocals without sounding like generic tough guy hardcore. "Captives of the Thuggee" throws in some blazing thrashy punk riffing, and the guitar solo at the end of the untitled bonus track? Positively ripping.

With most of Destination Time Yesterday's tracks falling under the two-minute mark, it blows by before you know it, and they don't give you much of a chance to catch your breath until it's done. It's like the musical equivalent of Rambo, Robocop, and Arnold Schwarzenegger (back when he was still cool) blowing shit up in a feature-length action/comedy with a brutal grind soundtrack, and fans of giant explosions as well as bands like Hewhocorrupts should take notice.