Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Grinch - The Blacking Factory (1992)


So, I'll be upfront and simply come out and say that I have little knowledge regarding the background or history of this band other than the fact that my brother knew one or two of the members during his younger days while going to high school in Oakland. He more or less introduced me to the "scene", whatever that may entail. My brother basically was the shit. I have fond memories during my youth of often staying at his "house", a renovated industrial garage in west-Oakland, firing off shotguns, 22's, M80s and anything explosive in the front room while drinking beer and listening to classics from Frank Zappa, Rush, Ministry, Testament, and Primus among many others. Among these happened to be this little gem. He had introduced me to Neurosis and Yngwie Malmsteen by that point and I was finding myself digging the likes of Megadeth, Testament, and Poison Idea among others. He threw Grinch's The Blacking Factory on for me one afternoon and I subsequently have been forever changed since. For better or for worse? I'm not sure.

I rarely listen to this album to be honest. It had a inch-thick crust of dust on it when I pulled it out of my collection this afternoon if that tells you anything (damn digital media!). However, there is something about this album that still sends shivers up my spine every time I listen to it. There is something decrepit, raw, and macabre within the sound of The Blacking Factory. There is a tale to be told here and if you listen to it closely enough, it is quite a disturbing one at that. Maybe this reflects the time the album was made: the year 1992. Shit, I was a wee little squirt that year! 12 years young, if memory serves me correct... I was still running around thinking Magic The Gathering was the shit, pogs were the "new thing", and I had migrated from my BMX to a bro's go-cart (pathetic, I know). 1992 marked a turbulent and uncertain period for America: We had just witnessed the end of Reagan's reign followed by the flappant attempts of Bush Sr., the official end of communism, the Gulf War was over, a recession was knocking on our doorsteps, drug and gang-related crime were on the rise, the LA riots, the end of Thrash Metal had approached leading to the rise of Death Metal, the stirrings of "grunge" and everything "pop" infected our very well-beings (damn you MTV!)...

Sorry, not to bore you there! Just had some momentary flashbacks.
Anyways, what better climate for post-hardcore? The year 1992 was the perfect climate for this sort of music and what better place for it to be summoned other than Oakland?!

So some of you may remember that one band dubbed Machine Head? Eh, probably not. Anyways, based on an unconfirmed account it is speculated that Chris Kontos was the drummer for them when they debuted. He also went on to play in Testament, Exodus, Konkhra, and Verbal Abuse. Blah, blah, blah. It just so happens that Kontos was also in Grinch as well! There's even a rumor that local Bay Area heavyweight and percussionist extraordinaire, Aesop Dekker who runs this awesome blog here, toured with Grinch also. All in all,
Grinch put out two full lengths then abruptly disbanded after a tumultuous tour in 1996.

That is all I know: Nothing more, nothing less.

...knead the muck...

3 comments:

GONZO said...

AMAZING, LOVE FROM ITALY ✟

Unknown said...

Sean Smithson (ex Sacrilege BC); git and vox
Ron Nichols (ex Christ on Parade/Jello B); bass
Idon Bryant (ex Crimpshine) git
Chris Kontos also drummed in Attitude Adjustment

Unknown said...

Sean Smithson (ex Sacrilege BC); git and vox
Ron Nichols (ex Christ on Parade/Jello B); bass
Idon Bryant (ex Crimpshine) git
Chris Kontos also drummed in Attitude Adjustment