March 27, 2012 | , | 4

Liberteer, Better to Die on Your Feet than Live on...

Liberteer: Better to Die on Your Feet than Live on Your Knees

It’s not often that you hear horns and a little folk on a grind-core album, especially an anarcho-punk fueled one. Yet, that’s exactly what Matthew Widener has done with his Liberteer incarnation. Blending furious, thick grind-core with what can only be described as early 1900s Russia anthems (the folk/horns blend I mentioned just seconds ago), Better to Die on Your Feet than Live on Your Knees is an album that has the feeling of revolution deeply rooted in its crushing grind.

I’d list out some key songs to illustrate what Widener is doing, but what’s the point. All of them pretty much kick ass — besides all 17 tracks explode out of the stereo in just over 17 minutes. There’s barely a pause as most of the songs transition from one to the next seamlessly, delivering ferociously barked vocals, buzzing riffs and unrelenting drums. The only time that there’s any respite is when the anthemic, revolutionary orchestrations arrive. And those segments, oddly enough actually fit into the mix quite well, never really causing any sort of distraction — they simply reinforce the message behind the music.

Now, this is certainly not an album for everyone. It’s going to really put off fans of no-nonsense grind. Better to Die on Your Feet than Live on Your Knees initially pissed me off. It took me several — SEVERAL — listens to fully understand why these orchestrations were even installed within what sounds like an otherwise solid grind-core album. But after listening to it for a while now, it only makes sense to have those folk and horn elements injected into the mix. Without them, I think the album (and artist) fails to deliver his message as succinctly as he could.

Take a listen below: