Healing is what happens when you cross a powerviolence set with a noise set- grinding harmony at one hundred and forty beats per minute. At least one hundred and forty beats per minute. Diva Karr’s debut album is an energetic sprawl of fuzz and electronica spilling underneath blast beats that kick your teeth in and vocals that could make you cry blood. It’s a sickening turmoil of absolute saw-waved glory. Everything about this album rips. Diva Karr’s sound grabs you, ripping at your ears until you focus. The guitar riffs and bass fuzz are sickening, “Almost” especially articulates this, the guitar playing a frantic tremolo-like as a breakdown between crushing chords. The drums infest each song, pumping away to build the backbone of the band’s grind-metal heart. The bass and electronics are nasty, an oozing paste that gives each track it’s feeling, that makes it sound like Diva Karr. Harsh noise crumbling from the metal overlay. They build depth and character, you can distinctly tell tracks apart from the electronics alone. Haunting waves guide the beginning of “Inverse” before giving way to guitar chords played like guillotines. The dirty mess of wavelengths builds underneath, a droning anxiety punctuating the quiet. The vocals are a wrenching growl, depressive imagery clashing and melding in with the powerviolence-adjacent breakneck speed. These separate elements create a fantastic album that hits you like a truck going 65 miles per hour.
Don’t worry, the depressive aspect of DSBM is still there- the speed of each song doesn’t lif you up, it drops you in a fucking pit. A pit composed of lyrical self-destruction and feelings of abandonment. Each song reminds you of your loneliness, of your cosmic insignificance. An insignificance that makes your pain and trauma seem absurd, only in a way that still hurts. Yes, your life is meaningless, but you still want to rip out your own heart. It’s a brutal trip into the absolute lows of a depressive episode. “Too long has my breath / been gone– each day I struggle / to regain it.” Lyrics like this bring forth a primal sadness in me, as I expect they would in you. The only hope this album gives is in the crescendos– at least in pain we can feel alive.
Diva Karr have created a work of art. The melding of different sounds into cohesive chaos is incredibly well navigated, Healing is incredibly cohesive. It’s a dark and painful journey, but one the masochist in you will enjoy every second of.
Diva Karr will be playing with WIMP, Greylock, and Armpits on 12/6/19 at the Dorchester Art Project