Mugsmasher is a one-man hurricane of searing guitar, propulsive beats, and prowling menace. Liam Ashcroft (Mugsmasher head technician) can often be found creating horror-tinged synthwave with his Jean Michel Noir’s Horror Orchestra, rock covers with ChillCollins, supercharged pop with Z.E.B.R.A., and pop-punk with the legendary Crocodile God.
So, welcome to his glittering world of power-post-punk on his Beelzebufo E.P. Each song arrives in a shower of sparks, pinging sound off every available surface and punching holes in the space-time continuum.
The EP lasts less than ten minutes spread over four songs but it hits hard and stays long after the last track has concluded.
Recorded at What Studio? in Liverpool, Beelzebufo is a smash-and-grab supercollider of a record. Each song arrives noisily; pulling up in the driveway, all engine revs and blowing exhaust and leaves by kicking the door in and burning it down.
Right from the off the onslaught is unleashed. Opening shot Horse Ghost sets the marker for the rest of the EP. Buzzsaw guitars burn all over thrumming bass and chaotic drums and Liam’s scream-speak vocals are primal. It’s a ferocious opening with some sweet melodies ghosting into the mix, lulling you into a sort of head-nodding bliss.
Smashed Monocle bristles with blurred-drum speed bursts that grab you and haul you along in a giddying, chaotic whirl and no sooner has it arrived, it’s gone.
Liam says “I made these as a response to the restrictions of lockdown. A band consisting of a person. No electronics this time. I like to pretend to be a pop star in my forties as a bald overweight dad because life’s too short to not larp around doing what you’re meant to regardless of public legitimacy or how stupid it looks to others, it’s not lost on me how ridiculous it is and enjoy that eccentricity.”
Lal’s Wolf Catcher is an anthemic banger with a killer chorus, howling wolves and a raging thunderstorm.
Dickhead Party bursts with layers of shock guitar riffs and throat-shredding vocals. It blurs its way through the drone and dirge, soaring at breakneck speed into the stratosphere only to fall back like the showers of Hades onto the burnt land below. If ever we needed an anthem for our times then this is truly it.
Mugsamsher’s Beelzebub E.P. is all about riffs, rage and energy. It’s a seismic beating of epic proportions that leaves all who bear witness staggering and blinking into the twilight, head swimming and heart racing. Liam essentially smashes the place up leaving us with ringing ears, elevated heart rate and blurred vision.
These are 2 minute bursts of rage and energy delivered with irreverence and plenty of humor. No track outstays its welcome, in fact a couple of them could maybe stick around for a little longer, you know, just to soak up the surging energy and intensity. There is a fun to be had with each of these songs. Melodies are huge and sweeping, as Liam wrangles the riffs with a flick of his electric whip, pummeling us into some form of shattering delirium.
Once over, it is advisable to sit and contemplate what you have just heard and experienced while letting the charged air settle around you before venturing out and re-joining civilization.
Beelzebufo is available now from Mugsmasher’s Bandcamp page.