I doubt that New Zealand punk band Spiteful Urinator spend any time worrying about the chain punk vs egg punk debate. I also doubt whether they care what today’s hip punksters consider to be in vogue. Spiteful Urinator simply concentrate on delivering gut-punching d-beat, cut with dark hardcore and crusty black metal. It’s a mean ol’ mix, and vicious as Hell, emphasising the band’s well-earned rep for being surly as fuck.
Spiteful Urinator have issued a number of ear-splitting CD-R and cassette releases over the years, but the band’s new self-titled 7" is their first vinyl release. The nine songs featured reaffirm that Spiteful Urinator don’t play nice or make comforting compromises. In fact, in a world awash in hollow hype, Spiteful Urinator are a welcome reminder that genuinely confrontational punk isn’t dead and buried. You just need to know where to look for it.
In Spiteful Urinator’s case, that’s in Hamilton, where a couple of the band’s members – guitarist Sean Carmichael and vocalist Dane Bailey – have been making ill-tempered music for decades. Carmichael and Bailey played formative roles in the birth of extreme metal in NZ (via bands like Gore Story, Enshrine, and Intorment), and Spiteful Urinator’s alter ego, doom/sludge trio Open Tomb, has been torturing fans with slow, spirit-crushing music in more recent times.
Point being, Spiteful Urinator have plenty of experience when it comes to writing punishing songs, and that’s exactly the kind of music you’ll encounter on their new 7”. Blistering (and belligerent) tracks like “B.F.W.N”, “Pick the Bones”, and “Maggots & Teeth” are propelled by bassist Tonamu’s bulldozing low-end and the relentless attack of Spiteful Urinator’s drummer, Bryan. Both musicians make crucial contributions to the battering intensity of Spiteful Urinator’s sound, which often reminds me of underground Japanese punk, mainly because so many Japanese punk bands also use some of metal’s rawest ingredients.
Truthfully, guessing any band’s influences is a potential minefield. So I’ll avoid that trap and simply point out that Spiteful Urinator’s barbaric music is framed by a gleefully obnoxious and resolutely old-school aesthetic: see the cover art and the teeth-rotting lyric sheet from their 7" for examples of that.
Musically, Bailey’s venom-spitting vocals and Carmichael’s bristling riffs ensure that hurtling tracks like “Vinyl Casket”, “Oh Well, Goodbye” and “Hyperbole” are all filthy and feral maelstroms – packed with dissonant, primitive punk. The whirlwind tracks here have clear crossover appeal, and Spiteful Urinator’s caustic, metallic snarl has certainly proved enticing for both crusty punks and likeminded rivetheads in the past.
Obviously, non-stop raucous noise isn’t going to suit everyone’s tastes. Some punk fans like music sprinkled with eccentricities. Others desire punk that’s more skittery or influenced by spiky new wave. Spiteful Urinator’s combination of pummelling speed, mangling instrumentation, and gnashing vocals isn’t subtle or quirky. And the band’s stubbornly savage approach is fuelled by far more bitterness and antipathy than it is by nuance.
Some might see the crude and grotesque nature of Spiteful Urinator’s music as a deficit, but, in reality, it’s the key to the band’s success. Too many punk groups add unwarranted and even incongruent elements into their music in the hope of expanding their fanbase. However, Spiteful Urinator reject adornments, embellishments, and fripperies. They focus their energy on what they do best: making ferocious music.
It’s not all grim, antagonistic tidings though. There is a dose of cynical humour in Spiteful Urinator’s madness, and the band do show an irreverent sense of self-awareness. Ultimately, though, as I’ve said before, Spiteful Urinator’s real expertise lies in making vile music that sounds and feels like it hates you.
That’s readily apparent on the band’s 7". If you enjoy bludgeoning music, then Spiteful Urinator will meet all your masochistic requirements. If you want quarrelsome music, then rest assured that Spiteful Urinator’s latest release also features boiling torrents of unapologetic bile.
In the end, Spiteful Urinator’s debut 7" is yet another glorious misanthropic cacophony. The band remains as abrasive and uncompromising as ever, and Spiteful Urinator’s eternal message remains the same: fuck you, fuck me, fuck everyone. I highly recommend you buy a fucking copy.
Spiteful Urinator’s 7” is out now and is co-released by NZ punk labels United Blasphemy Music and Limbless Records (limited to 150 copies).