Seattle’s Rabbit Junk has never been an easy group to classify. With equal parts metal, electroclash, industrial and a sprinkling of hip-hop for good measure, Rabbit Junk can be an overwhelming experience for the uninitiated. This was especially true on the groups 2008 effort, This Life Is Where You Get Fucked, which acted as a sonic blender for disparate styles, blending and mashing until there was no trace of origin left. Last years Pop That Pretty Thirty EP employed a more straightforward approach, but kept the spirit of the group intact. Now, Rabbit Junk’s newest offering, the Invasion EP, bridges the gap between the two, creating a tour de force of heavy electronic mayhem that could only be created by Rabbit Junk.
“Invasion” begins the EP firing on all cylinders, with a foreboding, cinematic intro that segues into a propulsive drum and guitar attack that’s as heavy as it is groovy. Its got all of the trademarks of the classic Rabbit Junk sound, with a massive chorus and pummeling instrumentation, the song is built to lay waste to every PA it encounters. The second track “Thug Baby” sounds like a continuation of the bands 2008 Ghetto Blasphemer suite, which aimed to combine West Coast gangta rap with the heavier elements of black metal. It goes without saying that unless you’re actively seeking out a cacophony of contrasting sounds, it’ll likely be a little overbearing. But for more adventurous listeners out there, “Thug Baby” just goes to show that genre doesn’t matter nearly as much as it’s made out to.
The second half of Invasion harkens back to the bands Reframe days. “Radical Acceptance” is a skitterish, drum and bass inflected bit of Digital Hardcore sound that should leave Alec Empire wondering where he went wrong. But it’s the EP’s final track “Broken Highways” that sees the Rabbit Junk sound come into full fruition. With co-vocals from longtime collaborator Sum Grrl, the song is an explosion of cyberpunk attitude with a pop-inflected digital sneer. It’s easily the most accessible song from the four track set and I dare say the most enjoyable. Invasion finishes with a bass-heavy remix of “Broken Highways” courtesy of Glitch Mode leader Sean Payne of Cyanotic, and instead of sounding like tacked on leftovers as so many remix tracks do, it showcases an already fantastic song in an intriguing new light.
Fans of aggressive electronic based music will undoubtedly appreciate the Invasion EP. Hell, fans of almost any kind of music will find something to latch on to. That’s honestly what makes this band so special. Sure, there may be a lot going on, but take the time to dig through the chaos and you’ll be rewarded with sounds that you would’ve never imagined could work together, let alone this well.