Harkonen – Like a Virgin

Harkonen
Like a Virgin

What is the fascination with Madonna? I used to have a tape of the record Like a Virgin when I was in high school. My friends and I would drive around and play it obnoxiously loud because we thought it was funny. She used to be controversial, but now her tricks are tired and predictable. These days it seems that Madonna has become a self parody, releasing shitty records and bowing to the likes of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. Fuck that bullshit. Hopefully that was one of the things going through these bands’ heads when they titled this split record Like a Virgin.

I have a copy of These Arms Are Snakes’ This is Meant to Hurt You EP. It is an excellent record that fuses the math-influenced guitar riffs of Botch with the robotic screams of bands such as The VSS and Song of Zarathustra. Somehow the band’s songs fall short of the mark on this split. My only real complaint is that during the midst of both of the songs, the music drops out and the singer delivers a one-liner that sounds completely stupid and ruins the songs. For example one of them features the line “You fuck all your friends,” delivered in the most deadpan style one could imagine in the middle of a really awesome and driving song. I only hope that the band’s new full-length will be more like the EP and not indulge in this type of lazy writing.

Harkonen is a sludgy metal band that sounds kind of like Black Sabbath and Helmet mixed together. I am pretty sure these guys have been around for a while, but I have never actually heard them before now. It is pretty decent stuff, being kind of noisy and low end. Since I have no other work from these guys to judge this by, I’ll go ahead and say that this is alright. Two tracks are contributed by Harkonen to this split.

The best song on here is the last one entitled, “Touched for the Very First Time.” It has some lines borrowed from the Madonna song “Like a Virgin,” and it features both Harkonen and These Arms are Snakes teaming up to produce one kick-ass song. Combining the best elements of both bands, this is the standout track on the split. I would almost go so far as to say that if you like either of these bands that this song is worth the price of admission alone.

Overall, this is a pretty decent split and would be a great combination if it weren’t for the less-than-excellent tracks by These Arms are Snakes. That band has a new record coming out next month so I’m willing to give them another chance to prove that they are still a good band. Decide for yourself if it is worth the money to have that one awesome song.