The Flenser // Now Flensing - Dark Experimental Record Label
Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra (SMZ) has traced a barbed-wire arc of genre-defying protest music, through seven albums , since its inception in 1999. SMZ has recently pared back to five players, with Menuck's massive spectrum-spanning electric guitar sound emerging as the spine around which two violins, bass (now more often electric than acoustic) and drums are supported and deployed. Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light On Everything is the first definitive document of the band's newfound sound and style as a quintet. The album centerpiece "Austerity Blues" with its closing lyric "Lord let my son live long enough to see that mountain torn down" sung in varying incarnations throughout the second half of this 14-minute epic, encapsulates Menuck's unflinching take on a world replete with shabbiness, greed and injustice, seen through the lens of parenthood, mortality, endurance and defiance. Feel-good music this is not; but neither can it reductively be tagged apocalyptic or world-weary. Fuck Off Get Free rages with scorn and with hope, utterly passionate but pointedly unromantic. Thee Silver Mt. Zion once again demonstrates, like few other bands working today, that there is much to fight against, much to fight for, and plenty more fight songs to sing.