I was caught off guard the first time I saw Baring Teeth. I happened to be at a venue in the band’s hometown of Dallas, Texas; one that was woefully under-packed. The dissonant doomy jazzy technically astounding death trio took the stage, promptly making every other act on the bill look like a gaggle of chumps. Two memories in particular stand out. The first is that my brain shut off, just mesmerized by the sounds that were attempting to invade through the too-thin membrane of skull. The second is that when I tied to shake the drummer’s hand and give him the old “holy shit dude great set” line, he yanked his digits away, presenting them to me in palms-up fashion instead. You see, so goddamn ferociously did he attack the kit that the skin on his fingers was just peeling away–an abstract surrealist mountainscape of ripped, jutting blisters.
Needless to say, I promptly darted to Baring Teeth’s merch dispensary and procured a copy of their debut LP, Atrophy. The title is a misnomer if I’ve ever heard one. Only the most finely cared for limbs could pull of daring instrumental feats of this ilk.
This all went down in the Fall of 2014. Now by my last count it’s been approximately 52,000 years that I’ve been forced to wait for a follow-up record. Finally, finally, the band is delivering the relief that skirts the horizon of protracted suffering.
Baring Teeth’s sophmore slump-defier is Ghost Chorus Among Old Ruins. It builds upon the Gorguts-inspired fractured take on extreme metal that the trio executed on so well with their initial release, but adds to it a much more oppressive atmosphere not unlike Deathspell Omega’s busier moments. But in contrast with many of the band’s peers, Baring Teeth have been sonically captured with a big, roomy, natural tone that makes the haunting moments gel in a way that scares the bejesus out of me when I listen with the lights off. The sound is akin to what you’d get if a couple seasoned jazz cats struck up an impromptu jam, and were then promtly possessed by the tainted soul of Lucifer, the rebel king of Hell.
Ghost Chorus Among Old Ruins is still a month away, set for a November 25th release. But don’t let sorrow rend you asunder: the record is available for preorder this very moment via the Willowtip records Bandcamp page.