Slave to the Grind



Metal bands without a bassist are nothing new (Pig Destroyer, Salome, etc.), and we’ve all seen metal bands without a drummer (Genghis Tron immediately comes to mind), but I honestly can’t think of a metal band that has no guitar player. The guitar is such an obvious cornerstone of metal that it’s as though the community made an unspoken pact to let any number of other instruments get left out in the cold, so long as there’s plenty of six-string action going on.

I don’t know if Canada’s Greber are actively standing up for the bass and drums, though, or if they just turned out to be sans guitar because their members aren’t guitar players, but whatever — they make it work, even without its most basic of instruments. A new project from Fuck the Facts bassist Marc Bourgon and The Great Sabatini drummer Steve Vargas, Greber describe themselves as “honest, losing man’s music,” which is actually a really good description — the music feels raw and barebones, and the emphasis on Bourgon’s Mo’nique-thick bass gives the band’s sound a sense of downtrodden defeat that is unparalleled in grind music.

In fact, there’s something about the absence of buzzsaw guitars that just highlights the genre’s roots in punk. I used the word “downtrodden” just a paragraph ago, but this isn’t doom (although there are sections of certain songs, like “Carriers” and “Bone Bath,” that have a very doom-y feel); Bourgon’s tone has an elastic quality that’s likely to inspire visions of the world’s bounciest mosh pit, or, perhaps, a rubber ball being perpetually bounced throughout the inner walls of the listener’s skull.

The short version: If most “normal” grind is like a dude in a hockey mask hacking you to death with a machete, than Greber might be best described as a really pissed-off dude thumping you to death with a hammer, or maybe a 2 x 4. The edges may not be sharp, but it’s still fucking painful, y’know?

You can check out Greber for yourself here. They’ve just released their debut album, Hometown Heroin, and will be embarking on a tour of Eastern Canada soon, “with more touring plans being hatched,” according to a press release. I’d be stoked to check these guys out live, so hopefully the make south of the border sometime in the not-too-distant future.



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