Ghidrah Invincible Deluxe LP reissue

Blessing GHIDRAH’s ’96 CD with a vinyl release, this record commemorates the 25th anniversary of the veteran New Zealand band’s debut. With a sharp new remastering courtesy of Dead Air Studios, this slab showcases 21 blasts of rowdy hardcore that are punctuated by random TV, movie, and video game sound bites. That structure was typical for powerviolence albums in the 1990s, and while the music here touches on that style with a few healthy blastbeats, there are other flavors at play that are hard to ignore. This is more of a primal and expressive sort of chaos in the vein of SUN CHILDREN SUN, complete with a good bit of brass cacophony. It’s a heavy, heavy racket that goes into a range of moods. There’s also a baked-in sense of strangeness that makes me think of the BUTTHOLE SURFERS, and the song “Can’t Undo” with its yearning indie melody and spoken-word overlays reminded me of the closing “Tugena” on the DEAD MILKMEN’s Big Lizard LP. An unlikely stew, but it’s a raw and original document that deserves the celebration.