The Unit may have an impressive back catalog, but their prolificity seems to have whittled the band’s sound into one that’s rather inert.
Sacred Bones, 2013
6.2 / 10
Though Destruction Unit‘s been in operation for nearly thirteen years in some form or another, it seems that they’ve only recently discovered what sort of band they are. In its infancy, the project was a synth-punk duo comprised of brothers Rusty and Ryan Rousseau. Since then, the Tempe, Arizona act has evolved into a garage-rock five-piece, hellbent on producing as much noise as ’60s influenced rock can afford. Since releasing three cassettes on their own label, Ascetic House, Destruction Unit has really found their stride. Deep Trip is their 2nd album release of the year, not counting a 7″ record and now sold-out cassette. The Unit may have an impressive back catalog, but their prolificity seems to have whittled the band’s sound into one that’s rather inert.
Though they’re not lacking in the volume and fuzz departments, something about the band’s sound seems elusive with their driving punk rhythms just missing their target. While an album as aggressive as Deep Trip should give the listener a post-punk punch in the face, its woozy psychedelic guitar effects instead invoke the groggy feeling of waking up from a long afternoon nap. You shouldn’t judge an album by its cover, but this time around, Deep Trip‘s title and artwork provide an apt description of the music it offers.
Deep Trip opens in a flourish of swirling, atonal noise that slowly morphs into a song. “The World On Drugs” is an overdriven assault that packs plenty of potential energy that never seems to be converted into a sizable amount of kinetic energy. The track is so oversaturated by its own swirling ambience, that it drags, as if trying to run at full sprint in the deep end of a swimming pool. When the fuzz is restrained to a manageable level, like on “Control The Light”, Destruction Unit lives up to its intimidating name; it’s pummeling rhythm and scorching guitars are sure resonate with just about anyone. Unfortunately, the tracks that are most worth you’re time are the album’s shortest, leaving one to pick through Deep Trip‘s more stagnant selections, like the six minute “Bumpy Road”. Perhaps Destruction Unit would have been better off just releasing one, much more focused LP this year, as Deep Unit falls flat, despite scattered moments of brilliance.