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Hear the Sickest Blackened Thrash Uprising on PHROZEN ‘Questioning Society’s Secrets’

You may have noticed that when I write about music, I focus on my mental and emotional response to it. And a lot of the time, especially with certain heavier genres, I tune into my rage. I’ll hear some especially ominous riffs or soul-crushing drums and I’ll think about all the things that piss me off, all the ways we hurt ourselves and each other for profit and to protect our fragile fucking egos. Sometimes I wonder whether the artists will resonate with my worldview, because I know some of them don’t even if that’s what their music drew out of me—and then I write it anyway.

Well, I don’t have to wonder with this ridiculously brilliant record from PHROZEN. Questioning Society’s Secrets feels like they took my letters and read each one out loud to the tune of some of the sickest, most devastating blackened thrash I could ever imagine. I mean, this is a seriously good fucking album. It’s an instant fucking classic and I am not exaggerating. I hope you’re listening to it right now because I can’t accurately describe the addictive nature of Questioning Society’s Secrets. It sounds like a gut punch to a million colonizers, or maybe a million gut punches to one colonizer, but either way, this is the soundtrack to peacefully and violently dismantling an increasingly oppressive power structure that’s gaslighting us into thinking we matter because we line their pockets. Holy fuck, it’s the full package for me.

The Bandcamp download comes with a zine (they’ll also have physical copies at their merch table on tour) that shares the ideas, inspiration, and ethos behind the album along with lyrics — you can check out a few of its pages below. What stands out to me the most is an assertion that lives rent-free in my head most days. The idea that “the way things are” is inevitable; that we’ve reached the pinnacle of human achievement and we’re living true to our natures; that the only evolution should be in the products we consume, as we progress from iPhone 13 to iPhone 14. That there’s nothing to learn from the people who stewarded the land with the utmost respect for it for millennia, and instead we need to keep mining and burning and killing and beating because that’s all we’re good at. And the fact that I can contemplate this with Phrozen while I’m rocking the fuck out???? HELL YEAH.

Cover art by Adam Kindred
Written By

Meghan MacRae grew up in Vancouver, Canada, but spent many years living in the remote woods. Living in the shadow of grizzly bears, cougars and the other predators of the wilderness taught her about the dark side of nature, and taught her to accept her place in nature's order as their prey. She is co-founder of CVLT Nation.

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