Aftermath: Insect Warfare at the Mink

Noise has always been a fascination for Aftermath. When we were younger, we had no idea about the great history our city has in relation to the evolution of the musical genre. Forever proudly relegated to outsiders and the obtuse, the clamor manages to grab its fans by the throat with it's walls of nihilism and confound it's detractors for the lack of conventionality.

Last night at the Mink one of Houston's biggest noise and grindcore acts, Insect Warfare, played to a packed upstairs crowd of noise as a warm-up to their upcoming mini-tour of Great Britain, the catalyst being British grind and death-metal label Earache's reissue of the band's breakthrough release World Extermination. Our own Chris Gray spoke with band leader Beau Beasley in last week's issue about the history of the band, which has been disbanded since early 2008.

Opening for IW was Richard Ramirez, who was assisted by Austin Caustic of Concrete Violin for a quick set of chain and sheet-metal assisted noise jams. Ramirez's own strain of noise may seem antagonist and ridiculously tiresome to some, but Aftermath has always found it innovative even when he didn't quite get all of his catalog. Hell, maybe there isn't supposed to be a meaning. Which is even better, because we are sick of everything having some grand worldly definition or other.

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Insect Warfare was welcomed back after their two-year absence with a large and rowdy crowd, which on a Monday night attested to the love the band still elicits in this town. IW came forth with a collection of their own originals plus a handful of covers from bands like Entombed and Napalm Death. Both of those bands informed IW's output and helped IW become the influence they are in grind circles today.

The band leaves today for that UK tour and sound more than able to blow the doors off the mother on the other side of the pond. If you missed them last night, it may be awhile before you see them live again as the Beasley and company have no plans to reorganize anything else in the States. Plus with the core of the band busy with the Homopolice, The Energy, and any other number of bands just waiting to come above the surface, a full-scale IW tour schedule may have to wait for a few years if ever.

Or you cheapskates could just fly to England to see them for the next few weeks, ya know?

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