It may seem like a dystopian future with King Nine’s latest record Death Rattle as it hits the stage in a crash and burn through the organized chaos of breakdowns and anguish. The sound carries the five moments before death, stated through their opening and closing tracks which feel more as chokeholds than actual songs.
From the bruised and abused opening track of “Paradise” which acts more as the gates of hell opening up from beneath, to the similar feel between the mid-point and finale of the record. There is something sinister about Death Rattle. The name alone strikes some fear into the heart as the cover stares back into the listener like a foreboding predator unto prey. King Nine carries themselves highly with Death Rattle and portrays the charcoal lines of a macabre painting, something with a real presence behind it.
While death may act as a reprieve for the constant beating that King Nine delivers, there is actually quite a substance to the record even beneath all the anger. Ultimately, with the tracks that flood in and seem to segue almost perfectly into each other; King Nine can continue without a single break in the pushing and inevitable end. Behind the daunting sounds of “Twisted Thoughts” or even “Gift of Life”, there is something uplifting that runs with these tracks.
They are well crafted and show a fundamental touch that can quickly turn the room into a whirlwind of balanced mixing and performance that is more inspiring than hurtful. Death Rattle has character and becomes this entity that focuses on deliberately pulverizing, but the music behind is an excellent display of hardcore punches and kicks that continues to impress after each listen. King Nine takes the New York underbelly to the surface, exposing the wires and mechanical beings that dwell underneath in a shining new display of dominance.
While there are no such thing as perfect records, Death Rattle gets pretty close and can manage to turn the couch into a stage diving zone. From the fast and punishing movements that occur now rather than later and the metallic overcoat; King Nine is angrier than ever and somehow incredibly clean underneath all those pedals and machines.