Ho99o9 - United States Of Horror album review
A hip hop/punk hybrid for our dystopian times
Wearing a wedding dress and throwing cornflakes on people forces them to pay attention. That’s what Ho99o9 did on their tour with The Dillinger Escape Plan earlier this year and it worked – their debut LP lands before an eager audience. This New Jersey freakshow, comprising vocalists theOGM and Eaddy, establishes itself as a primal, pissed-off snapshot of modern life. It’s dirty, discombobulating, spitting fluid rap and screams through the speakers. Bleed War’s choppy riffs and double bass evoke Ministry flashbacks while New Jersey Devil is Dead Kennedys two-stepping to Slayer. Hammy electronics and interludes pepper the record as hip hop battles punk, which in turn, is strangled by John Carpenter’s Halloween theme on Street Power. The band’s self-styled ‘horrorkult’ template fluctuates on Moneymachine and Hydrolics, veering into straight-up, spooky hip hop. It’s eerie, honest to the record’s theme and nothing like Insane Clown Posse (honestly), but talking about your bouncy new wheels just isn’t as exciting as saying you’ll fuck people up. And as honourable their intentions are, the album’s avant-garde climax, Blaqq Hole, is a bit GCSE Skinny Puppy. Nevertheless, the question must be asked: could Ho99o9 be our next vital, zeitgeisty crossover band? United States Of Horror is a compelling enough start.