I NAME YOU DESTROYER
review by Michael Lohr
What if the Melvins and Motorhead teamed up to kick The White Stripes' lily-white arses and somewhere along the line a rock band was born from the rubble. Ladies and gentlemen I give you Jucifer.
Jucifer are a two-piece unit consisting of the lovely, if not emotionally caustic, Amber Valentine on vocals and guitar with the ever pale, dressed in black Ed Livenwood pounding out a manic beat on the drums. Hailing from Athens, Georgia, where men are men and the goats are running scared, Jucifer know how to slam a riff in true garage rock style. Luckily, they have utterly no connection to fellow Athens natives REM and the B52s (thank the cornbread and bourbon gods for that), other than being fellow citizens of the Peach State. Forget the White Stripes, The Strokes et al, Jucifer play with more lethal aggression than a Panzer tank division. There are hints of Black Sabbath, P.J. Harvey and My Bloody Valentine, as well as The Donnas (an awesome all-woman band - check them out as well), The Breeders and Mudhoney. They have grooves, they have guitar riffs, they have feedback, they have dance beats and they have combination vocals that in just a few seconds can go from a sensual purr to a virulent scream. Ms Valentine has a caterwaul that would make any banshee proud.
On I Name You Destroyer Jucifer hit you with one intense riff rock classic after another. Tracks like Pinned To Glass, Firefly, Queen B, Black Satin, White Ice, Amplifier and Dissolver are straight ahead, in-your-face rock 'n roll, while Memphis takes the listener to somewhere else entirely. Memphis is the probably the best track of the lot, which is saying something. It begins as a haunting and lithe piano ballad and then suddenly switches tempo as a vicious guitar onslaught overtakes the song.
I Name You Destroyer is one of the best true to heavy roots rock 'n roll records that I have heard in a while. Not since New American Shame has something grabbed me so violently and wouldn't let go. Do yourself a favour and pick this one up, unless you like listening to tusspot music, then don't bother, Jucifer don't want you around anyway. This is Southern go-go Goth death pop in its finest hour.