It’s been almost two years to the day since Northwest Indiana-based deathgrinders Handsome Prick first popped up on my radar. Flash back to December 6, 2015 and the Indiana stop on Deicide’s “Death in the Manger Tour.” The Prick were one of the “locals” on the bill that night, but due to a combination of the doors opening close to two hours later than advertised, the sub-arctic conditions within the venue, and the four underwhelming-to-awful bands that played before them, I was in a shit mood by the time Juice (vocals), Brad (drums), Zach (guitars) and now former member Jim (bass) started setting up. When I saw Brad calmly take his off his jeans (he kept his boxers on) before sitting down behind his oddly small drum kit, I had no expectations that the evening was about to get any better.
And then they started playing. Approximately three minutes later, they’d fucked my face clean off. The same thing happened a couple months later when I saw them with Goatwhore in the same shitty room. Then in July they dropped their debut full-length Enlarged to Show Texture, which got a shout-out from The Black Dahlia Murder’s Trevor Strnad in his The Obituarist column for Metal Injection and ended up at #15 on my Year-End Best of 2016 list.
The Prick will be back on December 22 with Anonymityville, their second full-length and first release since signing with Horror Pain Gore Death Productions, and let me tell you – this record is a fucking beast. I’ve barely listened to anything else since I got the promo last week. For as good as Enlarged to Show Texture was, Anonymityville tops it in almost every conceivable way. Zach’s riffs are sicker and draw influence from an even wider range of styles (including the bizarrely stoner/doom sections of “Sex By Misadventure,” which absolutely should not work but totally do). Brad’s drumming is both more frenetic and more nuanced, depending on what each song demands. Juice continues to stake his claim as the most versatile vocalist this side of Travis Ryan of Cattle Decapitation, sounding like at least eight different people at various points on the record.
Given how fucking huge a fan I am of Handsome Prick, saying that I’m thrilled to be premiering “Hold On To The Nightstalker” today at Indy Metal Vault would be an understatement. The track combines old-school, ninja mosh-inducing hardcore, straight-up death metal, and all of the grinding madness one could ever ask for. If you can listen to it and not feel an all-encompassing need to hear the rest of Anonymityville rightfuckingnow, then you might need to check your pulse and make sure you’re actually alive.
According to drummer Brad Vanderzee:
“Hold On To The Nightstalker” is a song that tells the life and times of America’s favorite adult contemporary murderer/rapist, Richard Marx Ramirez. Be sure to check the locks on your windows and doors before you hit the hay tonight, because he’s out there in the shadows. And be sure to keep a tight lock on your heart, because he has been known to tug on those strings with a ballad or two.
Handsome Prick suffered immensely a great deal in 2016/17 only to return harder than ever with our follow up album Anonymityville. We take great pride in delivering this disgusting blend of death/grind/punk/rock and this album has definitely raised the stakes for us personally. We can’t wait for it to molest your ears!
Anonymityville will be available on December 22 via Horror Pain Gore Death Productions.