Album of the Day



Full confesstion: I had never even heard of Uphill Battle before this summer, when Empyereon/Meek is Murder drummer Frank Godla turned me onto them after this past August’s Cynic/Intronaut/Dysrhythmia show. I think what happened was, I said something about how much I love Danny Walker’s drumming in Intronaut, and Frank said, “Oh, you’ve heard Uphill Battle, right?” Turns out Walker was in Uphill Battle before Intronaut ever existed. Needless to say, upon learning this information, I told Frank I needed to hear something ASAP. Wreck of Nerves (Relapse, 2004) has been, like, wrecking my nerves pretty consistently since that night.

Even if you’re not an Intronaut fan, you should definitely check this out — ’cause Uphill Battle are a grind band, and, consequently, sound nothing like Intronaut (duh). Actually, maybe this is just ’cause I’ve had Wormrot on the brain recently, but that’s the band Uphill Battle most remind me (even as I acknowledge that they came first and so had I know better Wormrot would actually remind me of Uphill Battle). Adi Tejada and Jeff Capra’s guitars are vicious, but also still surprisingly warm, and the music is as brutal as you could ever want grind to be, but the riffs are all well-composed, so the music never ceases to be catchy despite its highly chaotic nature. Of course, Uphill Battle had a bass player (Casey Shropshire), so there’s no shortage of zee boom-boom.

And I haven’t even really had time to delve into Uphill Battle’s 2002 self-titled debut, or their posthumous rarities collection, Blurred. All of my love for them is based purely on all 37 minutes and forty-two seconds of Wreck of Nerves.

Now’s the part where, having (hopefully) enticed you, I’ll let some of the music speak for itself:

Killer shit, right? And one of those videos wasn’t even of very listenable quality.

Even though Uphill Battle are no longer together, their MySpace page still has a functional music player, so you can check out some more of this good shit there. And if you dig it, order their albums from Relapse.

And, as though I needed to remind you, Intronaut’s latest, Valley of Smoke, is out now on Century. It’s awesome. Go buy a copy.


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