Written by Barlovv
Transgressive – Extreme Transgression
> Thrash metal
> Arizona, US
> Releasing March 4
“All cops are bastards
They’re no fucking saviors
A few rotten apples
Is not where the blame is
The system can’t function
It’s murderers and liars
That put feet to the fire”
I have said before that there is a time and a place for metaphor, and artist abstraction is all well and good, but sometimes you need a fucking sledgehammer. Friends, Transgressive is an absolute fucking sledgehammer, and I couldn’t mean that to be any more complimentary if I tried.
Extreme Transgression is the debut full-length record from Arizona thrash outfit Transgressive, and gang – it goes hard and it is not making any effort to disguise exactly what the fuck it’s talking about. The album opens with a banger called “1312” which includes maybe the best quote from a cop that I’ve ever heard in my life, and proceeds to shred the absolute shit out of your unworthy face, which is a trajectory that continues for the rest of the album.
I am extremely pleased to report that Transgressive has grabbed me by the ears even though I don’t often listen to thrash. Part of me wonders if that’s because of the absolute transparent sincerity that I can feel in every single word screamed on this album. There is a sense of real and justified rage throughout this record, and frankly it continues to be full of subject matter that just won’t stop being fucking current. As I write this back in February, I can only imagine the horrific relevance that this will have only a month later.
Extreme Transgression is set to utterly eviscerate an impressively large amount of topics across its 41 minutes. Trans rights, police violence, capitalism, marginalization, and there isn’t a single fucking ounce of subtlety here, demonstrated beautifully by the song “Landlord Liquefier” – it’s hard to imagine there is a way to misunderstand the title of that one. We stay with that energy and fury steady from end to end here, and it’s absolutely clear that Transgressive will take no further bullshit, and aren’t going to be coy.
Everyone is in fine form here, too, Alicia Cordisco on vocals and guitar is an absolute beast. Her incensed, throat-scraping vocals are as moving and admirable as they are – presumably – physically painful to execute. And if it’s riffs you want to hear about, Alicia and lead guitarist Joshua Payne are a force to be reckoned with throughout the runtime, working extremely well together. You’ve also got nonstop great bass licks from Leona Hayward, and even a dynamite guest vocal appearance from Lux Edwards (of Soulmass and Cordisco‘s funeral doom project Wraithstorm) on “We Protect Us”. With impressive performances from end to end, I really don’t know what more you could possibly ask for in something like this.
Add to being extremely based in their writing the fact that Transgressive walks the fucking walk, too, with their debut further demonstrating the band’s ongoing commitment to mutual aid. They raised two grand for the National Network of Abortion Funds with previous work, and proceeds from this one are going to benefit Trans Lifeline. There’s a lot to love here, even putting aside how hard the album rips, and rip it fucking does.
Honestly, where the album shines even brighter is in its takedown of liberal culture as well. With record highlight “Bury Me in Rainbow Flags”, well-deserved criticism is raised at so-called “allies” who think they can vote away any problems, and think that waving a flag or saying the right thing is the same as being supportive. You know the ones, the ones with the trans-rights Twitter cover who are bending over backwards to buy the new TERF wizard video game and who lost their shit when Joe Biden was elected as if the world was now saved. Those liberals. Often the aim goes to the hard right people, but it is well worth pointing out that the center left might as well be the right, and they’re just as guilty of harm as any other fucking bigot. As Transgressive says: “Your lip service is worth nothing”. Can’t argue with that.
THE BOTTOM LINE
From the opening clip and riff I knew I was going to love Extreme Transgression, and it sure helps that the rest of the album lives up to that initial feeling. If you’re already a thrash fan, then this is a no-brainer. If you’re like me and not necessarily a thrash devotee, maybe this is the exact thing you need to change your mind. Get this fucking album and start swinging sledgehammers.