Album Details

September 29, 2009
Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Heavy Metal, Noise-Rock, Grunge, Alternative Metal

Album Review

As outlandish as Melvins records tend to be, Chicken Switch surpasses expectations. As if remixing the grunge pioneers' baritone vocals and chunky guitar isn't a bizarre notion to begin with, the chosen contributors weren't taken from the typical pool of electronic DJs (no Justice or Girl Talk here!). These are the guitar-slinging, experimental/noise variety of remixers, with Matmos, Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo, the Boredoms' Yamatsuka Eye, Acid Mothers Temple's Kawabata Makota, and noise icon Merzbow doing the cutting and tweaking. Stranger still is the fact that these artists aren't reworking particular songs, but instead are each using a full album's worth of material (or more) to deconstruct and rework into a single track. Usually the material is warped beyond recognition. It's difficult to tell what album spawned Merzbow's song, since it's rendered indecipherable by a wall of trebly distortion and static. Meanwhile, for "Prick Concrète/Revolution M," onetime Melvin David Scott Stone elongates a bassy Buzzo a cappella into three minutes of whale-like throat singing. Lee Ranaldo's "Eggnog Trilogy" is one of the few tracks that actual feels like a real song with an actual backbeat -- although, like the rest of the album and most of the Melvins' back catalog, it's disturbingly choppy and at times frightening. Chicken Switch is a punishing, twisted mess -- and in that aspect, it remains true to the warped Melvins aesthetic, and fans will probably eat it up. Even diehards may find it hard to decipher the source material, but the wealth of creativity on board is highly admirable.
Jason Lymangrover, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Washmachine Sk8tronics [Mix]
  2. Emperor Twaddle [Remix]
  3. She Chokes Her Dying Breath and Does It in My Face [Mix]
  4. Aahhh... [Mix]
  5. Linkshänder [Mix]
  6. Eggnog Trilogy: She's Ivanhoe/Cancer/Inebriated [Mix]
  7. Snow Rem Rem Ibvz [Mix]
  8. Prick Concrète/Revolution M [Mix]
  9. Queen [Electroclash Remix]
  10. The Silky Apple Butter of Youth [Mix]
  11. 4th Floor Hellcopter [Mix]
  12. Disp_Tx_Skel_Mach_Murx [Mix]
  13. Overgoat [Mix]
  14. Over from Under the Dog, Girl & Boy Treatment [Mix]
  15. Hard Revenge Milly Bloody Battle vs. The Melvin's Ozmatized Gore Police
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