San Antonio, Texas-based post hardcore trio THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY will release their A Cult That Worships A God Of Death full-length via Learning Curve Records July 16th.
A Cult That Worships A God Of Death weaves post-hardcore, noise rock, and metal, mixed with a heroic dose of dark post-rock into a distinctly singular sonic tapestry. Boasting eight tracks, the record comes across like a two-headed beast, its first half, a scorching, riff-filled goliath that stomps and chugs with the fury of a cornered bull, while side-B bares the more prone side of the animal, with longer, more intricate, and introverted songwriting that allows its ideas to ruminate and evolve. Recorded during the 2020 lockdown, it’s a record that captures the chaos and tribulations of a year gone bad.
“2020 sucked for everyone,” comments guitarist/vocalist James Woodard. “I had just bought a house before the lockdown, so I decided to build out a room in the garage so I could track my own music and take my time recording.”
The band tracked everything at Woodard’s house and collaborated with long-time friend and owner of Ecsttatic Studio Ali Jaafar (Another Heaven) for the mixing and production while mastering was handled by James Plotkin (SunnO))), Thou, Electric Wizard). The result is the heaviest, most focused release THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY has ever released. “I am so, so excited to have everyone hear this record! We can’t wait to get back in front of crowds again and feel that sweaty electric magic again.”
In advance of the release of A Cult That Worships A God Of Death, the band has unveiled a video for first single, “The Act Of Buying Groceries,” compiled from footage of their 2019 Japanese tour. Elaborates Woodard of the timely track, “‘The Act of Buying Groceries’ is about the struggles of isolation and how doing simple things like going to the grocery store can be an overwhelming experience in the context of Our Times. The song chugs away at an angular 7/8 rhythm like a washing machine with a cinder block inside, ready to rip itself apart, before falling into a super riff-heavy groove to ride the listener out before feeding them into the meat grinder of everyday existence.”
View THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY’s “The Act Of Buying Groceries” video at THIS LOCATION.
A Cult That Worships A God Of Death will be released on vinyl and digital formats. Find preorders at the Learning Curve Records Bandcamp page at THIS LOCATION.
A Cult That Worships A God Of Death Track Listing:
1. Untitled (Intro)
2. The Act Of Buying Groceries
3. Charging Bull
5. The Pastor’s Pockets
6. A Cult That Worships A God of Death, Parts I-IV
7. Bullet Curtain
Forged in 2006 as an instrumental project, THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY is an iconoclastic post-hardcore outfit that began during Woodard’s college years, where he spent hours in front of a computer obsessively crafting songs on his own. After releasing one demo, he quickly found like-minded musicians in San Antonio making THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY a more collaborative and live affair. The band quickly began releasing EPs and splits, most notably the Gun EP, followed by splits with San Antonio’s Sohns and Atlanta’s Hawks. This era also saw the release of Soft Noise, the first of several ambient EPs by Woodard under the TGLH moniker.
Initially released in 2010, the Every Man For Himself And God Against All EP was the first release to earn THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY a wider audience, reaping praise from the likes of CVLT Nation and The A.V. Club. A sweeping, five-part, album-long song that takes its listeners on a visceral, pummeling journey, the EP was later remastered by James Plotkin and re-released on limited vinyl through Crowquill Records.
2014 saw the release of All Sadness, Grinning Into Flow, the band’s most audacious release yet, as well as their debut on new label home, Learning Curve Records. Inspired by Popol Vuh and Tangerine Dream, All Sadness… saw the band varying hard into a more introspective, Kraut-inspired take, while keeping the primitive heaviness of the band intact. “I consider this record to be one of the biggest accomplishments of my musical career,” Woodard explains. “I’m very proud of what we did on this record and I think we may have broken some fans’ brains in terms of what to expect from us.” Vinyl copies sold out quickly and remain out of print.
In 2017, THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY had the opportunity to really flex their creative muscle in a new way. “I was approached by a local filmmaker, Dave Sims, about scoring his short film. He told me that it leaned on horror heavily but was ultimately a survival film. Creating a film score had been a lifelong dream of mine…” Woodard holed up with long-term recording engineer collaborator, producer, and Pigface alumnus Bob Catlin for several weekends and created the soundtrack to Cavern. The music also received a vinyl LP release on Woodard’s own Canon Imprint microlabel,
That same year, the band released their split with Minneapolis’ legendary Gay Witch Abortion (Amphetamine Reptile Records) which marked the first time Woodard started utilizing vocals heavily in his songwriting process. “We were an instrumental band for a really long time, and in some ways [being instrumental is] really liberating. But the songs and riffs I was writing just felt like they needed vocals. I had to get over some of my own personal insecurities, but I think the songs really benefit.” The lyrical content of the music varies from the ennui-tinged lamentations of a thirty-something office worker to scathing critiques of government, classicism, and American Christianity.
Since their inception as a full band, THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY has toured regularly, meeting friends and slaying faces countrywide and in 2019, the band was finally able to bring their scathing sounds overseas to Japan. “It was the most amazing experience! Playing in Japanese live houses every night was an eye-opening experience, and I feel like American bands and music venues can learn a lot about professionalism and business practices from how things operate in Japan in the live music industry.” During the tour, the band test-drove tracks from what would later become this year’s A Cult That Worships A God Of Death full-length. “We gauged crowd reaction from these songs, and that’s sort of how I came up with the flow and order of the album we were about to record.”
THE GRASSHOPPER LIES HEAVY:
James Woodard – guitars, vocals, synth
Mario Trejo – bass
Steven Barrera – drums