Full Album Stream: Teeth – Unremittance
This album should come with a warning: “If you turn the volume up to the ideal level for this music, which is as loud as your speakers can take without exploding, it may blast you through the wall and into the next building.” It’s that powerful and, at times, explosive.
“Unremittance” is the perfect title. The album is unremitting, brutal and hypnotic. When the guys from Teeth (based in California) gave me the streaming link, I thought I would dip in quickly to see what each track was like. That didn’t happen. It gripped me from the first chord and held me captive for the duration. Then it mind-controlled me to click replay and I listened to all of it again. The bloody thing is addictive.
Here’s how Teeth sum up their approach: “Expressing our hatred through visceral dissonance.” They’ve entered new territory and annexed several genres to do that. You’ll see that the tags on Bandcamp distill down to “dissonant death/doom sludge metal.” Straight away the death/doom and sludge parts make it totally Mammal music.
I’d call them up on the “dissonant” part, though. That carries too much implication of “unmusical.” The way they couple two guitars and two dark, deep vocalists is extraordinary. These respective elements work in tandem the way the equations of chaos theory work. They reveal snapshots of haphazard disharmony. Beneath that facade, however, lies a beautiful, complex pattern of neatly ordered unpredictability.
“Unremittance” is a short album, running to about 28 minutes. It’s much more than an EP, however. The seven tracks yield a feast of quality that hugely exceeds the quantity. Isn’t that what we all want in our music?
Expect Teeth’s music to drill its way into the darker corners of your mind and evoke some savage emotions. If you’re angered by anything, “Unremittance” is a way to channel your hatred into whatever pisses you off. Since I’m always a happy chappy, it doesn’t have quite that effect on me. It bathes my brain with pleasure waves.
The line-up consists of Erol Ulug – Rollie, you can call him – on guitar and vocals; Timothy Gaskin, drums; Peter King, bass; and Justin Moore, guitar and vocals. In a brief chat, Rollie filled me in on the band.
Metal State: How did Teeth begin?
Rollie: The band began with myself and Justin Moore. Prior to Teeth we were together in a technical grindcore band called Wageslave. After playing intricate, relentless, fast music that was mostly difficult to play and listen to we decided to start Teeth since we dug doom/sludge and wanted to try something other than cramming 9,999 riffs into 2-3 minutes. So we began writing the first batch of songs that eventually became “Unremittance” some time back in late 2012.
Really the only goal was to somehow make music using the worst combination of notes/chords we could find with two guitars. By early 2013 we had recruited Tim Gaskin on drums. He added a lot to Teeth’s sound with his groove and endless creativity. The drums were recorded in the summer of 2013, and the rest of the record was tracked slowly over the next year. Sometimes songs underwent significant structural changes even after the drums were recorded. During the recording, bassist Peter King joined and essentially learned the songs in the studio, then recorded them on the spot.
This slow recording process was only possible since I work as a producer/engineer and have a studio, and was working on several other records the whole time. “Unremittance” came into being. Finally by fall of 2014, all the music and vocals were done and we began rehearsing as a full band.
Metal State: Who were your influences?
Rollie: The more obvious ones that we’d all agree on are Gorguts, Ulcerate, and Death Spell Omega. The less obvious influences range as far as jazz composer Wayne Shorter to French classical composer Oliver Messaien.
Metal State: What are your immediate plans now that the album is done?
Rollie: Our very first show will be in a little under two weeks with Incantation at Orange County Music Hall in Anaheim, California, on January 16th. Currently, the first vinyl pressing of “Unremittance” is already in the plant. We’re hoping to have the records by March/April.
I didn’t ask Rollie what it might take for Teeth to break through in a big way because I already know the answer to that one. If their live sound is anything like their studio performances, all they need is for metal fans to hear them. They’re going to grab plenty of people by the sensitive parts of their anatomies.