CD, Les Forces Alliés, 2006
“Like a rust-covered steel pipe blow to the head and ribs” wouldn’t be too far off the mark as a description of the sound of “Biz Zum Tod”. Yes, that intense. Mixing musical elements and the attitude of Punk, Grindcore and Industrial, this Lorraine-based band serve a bargain-priced (more about that later) slab of caustic politically-charged musical aggression that is sure to leave an impression on any listener.
With few exceptions, the song-writing of the Muckrackers seems somewhat formulaic: intro which may include documentary/newsreel samples (in French and invariably themed around a conflict or struggle of some sort) quickly followed by layers of intense beats, bass, distortion and caustic melodies accompanied by strafing guitars which are the groundwork for intense growling vocals (the contents of which aren’t necessarily decipherable). All this intercalated with more documentary samples. It may sound repetitive but the incendiary tracks are performed with enough skill, intensity and enthusiasm to make them anything but repetitive. In fact, the end result is quite the opposite and “Biz Zum Tod” is an extremely intense and engaging experience from beginning to end.
After the tense and foreboding “Le Chant Des Mineurs”, “Biz Zum Tod” quickly explodes, the Muckrackers unleashing a fireball of aggression and managing to keep pace during most of the album. Only towards the very end is there some respite from this struggle in the form of relatively calmer tracks like “Kein Vergeben” (with the German Beinhaus) and “Blast Furnace Valley (explosivvv version)”. “Kein Vergeben” is also one of the stand-out tracks in the album along with tracks like “T63”, “Lokomotiv” (pay attention to the sample at the end and its historical implications) and “Rot Front 36”.
An added bonus to this dose of sonic warfare is the video for “Kein Vergeben” which gives a small glimpse of the Muckrackers’ live act performance. A small glimpse indeed, as Muckrackers are one of those rare bands whose memorable live act consistently outclasses their studio recordings.
Worthy of mention is the 10€ price tag of the album and the band’s encouragement for the public to steal any copies which are priced higher than this. Definitely worth checking if you like your music intense and uncompromising. And with some sincere ideological and historical inspiration behind it.
— Miguel de Sousa