The Love Below - Reproductive Rights [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)

The Love Below

Reproductive Rights [7-inch] (2010)


First off, look at that cover art. No, really look and let that sink in. There are skulls in the vaginas. The centerpiece is a vagina with a multi-pierced labia. And there's probably more going on that I am even capable of comprehending. Congratulations to the artist, Eric Marshall, for creating one of the most ridiculous and provocative cover arts I've ever seen. Seriously, this is up there with Virgin Killer , Been Caught Buttering and Carnivorous Erection.

Moving onto the band, the Love Below is a California-based hardcore band with a dirty and grimy sound. There's a good amount of riffing mixed in with fast parts and even some Sabbath-styled guitar leads. These five songs clock in at just over eight minutes, so there is no time wasted. Sonically, the guitars aren't over-distorted, but the overall band sound is pretty raw, leading to a generally overdriven sound (if that makes any sense at all). With such a short playtime for each section, nothing overstays its welcome and the band is good at repeating or revisiting sections when appropriate.

The vocalist has a nice higher-pitched shout, akin to the style of Touché Amoré, but more aggressive and with a touch of insanity. As provocative as the cover art is, the lyrics do a good job of aligning with the over-the-top confrontational approach. In the second track, "Some People Have Real Problems," the lyrics attack the modern consumer lifestyle: "I hope you wrap your fucking luxury sedan around a telephone pole. I hope your fucked-up children leave you to die in a state-run geriatric hospital."

While the content of this release might be offensive to some people, it's actually a fairly easy-to-listen-to EP that is well-written and performed. Fans of Trash Talk and Some Girls would likely enjoy this band and this release has left me highly interested to see what they do next.