Chuck Schuldiner Project

Friday, October 25, 2019

Live Skull - Saturday Night Massacre

Live Skull are New York legends. The No-Wave scene of the 80s, brought forth by bands like Swans and James Chance remains unforgettable. Saturday Night Massacre sees one of those bands coming back after thirty years of silence to show that they've still got it. Live Skull's latest is incredibly vibrant, a magical mix of what worked four decades ago and what resonates with the American public now. This is a beautifully produced and endlessly addictive offering from a band who defined a movement.

The record sounds incredibly in touch with the times. Lyrics tackle issues like police brutality, sexual harassment and the current generations overarching sense of doom. Saturday Night Massacre is an incisive look into our society. Even relatively naive seeming lyrics like, 'It's all about powerful men/In powerful positions' seem incredibly pointed when delivered by the bands legendary frontman Mark C. Though the band has a largely revamped lineup to achieve this modern sound, Saturday Night Massacre still sees excellent guest appearances from former members Thalia Zedek and Marnie Greenholz.

I think what gets me about this record is that it's very much a no-wave record meant for 2019. There is no retrospective navel gazing here. There is no anger at the youth of today for not caring about Lydia Lunch. Instead what this is is a remarkably pure piece of music from a band who are tight, who craft excellent songs and who are eagerly driving towards something that, at best, hints at transcendence. Saturday Night Massacre is a masterful work and one that has me hoping that Live Skull come back soon.

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