There’s no drum machine in Jesus Crost’s arsenal but the Dutch duo channel the mechanically-enhanced vibe of recent Agoraphobic Nosebleed or Enemy Soil on Tot. Even the artwork has a Prosthetic Cunt’s Eurotrash cousin vibe to it. But nope, no drum machine. Just a guy in a lucha libre mask who calls himself 10 beat blasts in time with a guitarist known only as 13.
While Jesus Crost, on balance, may not have honed their songwriting chops to the scalpel edge of the aforementioned, Tot boasts a raw, wood shop guitar tone and “Geheimfavorit” could have been lifted off of just about any era Enemy Soil 7-inches. There are other flashes that hint at the band’s gestational potential to grow into a respected player in the Euro grind realm as well. The bouncing opening of “Der Schnock” will get your wooden shoes tapping and “Milevsky” slo-mo wades through 30 seconds of the same quicksand murk that defined Nasum’s “The Final Sleep” before being tattooed by relentless blastbeats.
Things do go off the rails late in the album, though. The band squander whatever good will they’ve accumulated, unfortunately, as they close out their album anticlimactically with their live appearance at the 2008 Obscene Extreme Festival, 10 minutes of the worst live recordings you’ve ever heard. Seriously, the first couple of listens, I actually thought it was some sort of lofi electronics dickery.
But that’s easily ignored. While Jesus Crost may need to invest in a better live sound engineer, Tot shows the band already has a confident handle on its studio sound.