Friday, 6 July 2012

Life Cycle "The weight of tradition" 12" 1989

As you will have noticed, Terminal Sound Nuisance is all about quality rather than quantity, and again today, this powerful statement is about to be exemplified with another amazing post: the 12" of Life Cycle.

LC was a Welsh band from the late 1980's. "The weight of tradition" is their second record, the first one being an excellent Ep called "Myth & ritual", both were put out by Mad World records (in fact, they were the only productions of said label). Unfortunately, information about LC is scarce but I understand they rose from the ashes of Capital Gain, a more "traditional" anarcho-sounding band. They were supposed to be included in "Trapped in a scene" but finally weren't (late contributions maybe?). The Welsh scene had a couple of good, original bands at the time like Shrapnel (with whom they actually shared a member at some point in the late 80's), Symbol of Freedom or The Next World (who appear on LC's thank list). But back to the record. LC played a mixture of punk and metal (a popular blend at the time to be sure) but didn't really sound like any other band of the era. This is groovy, crushing, dirgy metal-punk we're dealing with here, not unlike Celtic Frost or late Deviated Instinct, in that LC picked heaviness over speed. They also remind me quite a bit of an obscure German band called Intricate. The atmosphere of the songs is very bleak and the sound is rather cold, almost industrial. There are two vocalists, a girl and a boy, which makes the songs more varied and not monotonous. The male singer's voice has a Hellbastard undertone to it while the female one is much clearer, more powerful, more shouted than screamt, akin to the classic anarchopunk vocal style probably.

Thematically, this 12" is centered around the issue of feminism and the weight of tradition imposed on women. The cover is divided into two parts, on the left is a drawing of a naked woman in a rather suggestive pose whose face is hidden, while on the righ is a drawing of a carcass in a slaughterhouse. The fact that both drawings have the same shape creates a parallel between the female body as seen by the male eye and dead flesh, meat. Quite clever, right? The lyrics are metaphorical and reflects the feeling of alienation and social suffocation. It's pretty dark on the whole and quite short as well, which, along with the circularity of the music itself, illustrates well this sense of desperation and helplessness. Favourite lyrics have to be "Demolition" as they deal with gender relations and contain this great line "We crack ourselves open, Martyrs to social codes". Marie, the bass player/singer, wrote a text about gender issues and conventions that you can find at the bottom of the back-cover. Interesting stuff that can make a good introduction to such issues.


  1. cant stop downloading... all of my fav bands. give us Myth & Ritual 7 inch please. Cheers!!!

    1. Hallo there, thanks for the kind words. The Life Cycle Ep has actually already been posted on Mad Blasts of Chaos and I try to post things that have not as much as possible. But never say never I suppose ;)

    2. got it. thanx!