“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” at #3 on The Motorfuzzin’ Ibex’s Top 100 Albums of the Year. Article coming soon.
Taken from The Motorfuzzin’ Ibex’s Top 100 Albums of the Year list. Article forthcoming.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” at #12 on Rich Piva’s Top 20 Albums of the Year list.
Taken from Rich Piva’s Top 20 Albums of the Year list.
Honorable Mention, Josh Schneider’s Top Ten Albums of 2022.
Caustic Casanova ‘Glass Enclosed Nerve Center’
By far the most unique album created this year, in fact probably the last few years. It’s extremely well done and refreshing to listen to.
Taken from “Top Ten of 2022” by Josh Schneider.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” at #3 on Vinaya Saksena’s Top 20 Metal Albums of the Year list.
Top Ten Albums of the Year: Caustic Casanova – Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
Top Ten Singles of the Year: Caustic Casanova – Lodestar
I cannot describe or put their music into a genre. This band and all their albums clicked with me right away. Maybe closer to Queens of the Stone Age than Sabbath, but amazing vocals and guitar licks. I believe this band is having a lot of fun and it comes out in their songs.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” at #9 on James Turner’s Albums of the Year List.
Taken from James Turner’s Top 10 albums of the year list.
-TOP 10- Mejores Sorpresas del 2022
7. Caustic Casanova – Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
El ingenio llama a las puertas de la locura, la última entrega de Caustic Casanova es lo que yo llamo un disco para paladares exigentes, no del gusto de todo, pero reinantes en ese desconcierto que habita en todo “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”. A esta hazaña solo se le puede alabar por su amplia gama de cálculos infinitos, de golpes y contrastes varios, un disco lleno de posibilidades dónde definitivamente se presenta la baza más importante de Caustic Casanova; su infinita creatividad.
Taken from a Spanish language article “Top Ten Biggest Surprises of 2022” by Ruben Herrera.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” at #40 in Dan Obstkrieg’s Top 50 Metal Albums of the Year.
Song of the Year 2022
Caustic Casanova, “Bull Moose Against The Sky”
The 22-minute side-B-devouring epic tale — multiple speakers and Greek chorus included — spanned progressive Americana, heavy rock and roll, punk, black metal blastbeats, disco keyboards, and historical narrative with nigh-on-impossible fluidity, mining cohesion from confusion in a singular achievement and at a level of execution that most bands simply never touch. Though its purposes were different, I rate “Bull Moose Against the Sky” of a quality that stands alongside the likes of grand declarations like Ancestors’ “First Light” and YOB’s “Marrow” as the kind of song that happens only a couple times in a decade. As I said above, it is the reason I’m including a song-of-the-year section in this post at all. If you have not heard it, I tell you with all sincerity that you’re missing something special.
Taken from the “The Obelisk Presents: The Best of 2022 — Year in Review” by JJ Koczan.
Top 60 Albums of 2022
#4. Caustic Casanova, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
In the name of all that is good and right in the universe, have you heard this album? With it, Caustic Casanova — bassist/vocalist Francis Beringer (who wrote the best lyrics I read all year, hands down), drummer/vocalist Stefanie Zænker, and guitarists Andrew Yonki and Jake Kimberley — outdid themselves, the pandemic and the legacy of Theodore Roosevelt in five songs and 45 minutes of unflinchingly perfect quirk. Are they punk, noise, prog, stoner rock, post-hardcore or sludge? Yes. Also no. Also a little bit, maybe? I’ve been through Glass Enclosed Nerve Center — the band’s fifth album and first written as a four-piece — a bother-my-family-with-it amount of times, and I’m still up in the air on where it rests categorically, and perhaps that’s in part because the one thing it did not do was rest. Even in the multiple stages of 22-minute finale “Bull Moose Against the Sky,” which I promise you is the only reason I’m even doing a Song of the Year part of this post below, their moves were considered and unpredictable in kind, and whether it was the weight of “Lodestar,” the sunrise at the outset of “Anubis Rex,” the yes-it’s-been-like-that mania of “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” or the hypnotic-plus-dizzying then massive “Shrouded Coconut” on side A, Caustic Casanova were able to pivot from one part the next while making hooks out of single measures and crafting an outing that went beyond even the sundry weirdo triumphs they’ve had to this point in their tenure. A special record on every level one might want to consider, and quintessentially the band’s own.
Taken from the “The Obelisk Presents: The Best of 2022 — Year in Review” by JJ Koczan.
Imprevedibilità. Con questa parola mi sento di riassumere l’essenza del quinto album del quartetto americano (e probabilmente anche di tutta la loro carriera musicale), attivo dal 2006; ennesima dimostrazione di una band capace di stupire divertendosi e fregandosene bellamente di qualsiasi volontà di essere inscatolati ed etichettati – dover scrivere “heavy rock” sulla propria bio basta e avanza, in questi casi, per non inciampare nel ginepraio dei post- e dei mille rigagnoli del prog e della musica sperimentale in generale. Una vera lezione di attitudine e libertà espressiva.
È possibile essere originali e freschi nel 2022? La risposta è “Caustic Casanova”.
Nelle cinque canzoni che compongono Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, uscito a ottobre per Magnetic Eye Records, troverete tutto ciò che si possa desiderare in ambito “rock alternativo”, da intendersi nella sua accezione più ampia.
Brani brevi, brani lunghi (o anche lunghissimi), assoli, sfuriate punk, dinamiche di ogni tipo, e poi riferimenti più o meno palesi a Yes, Voivod, Melvins, Soundgarden, At The Drive-In, King Crimson, oltre che a qualsiasi band possiate riconoscere in questo o quel riff, stoner rock, heavy metal, prog, funky, post-tutto, blast beats, melodie che non vi usciranno più dalla testa, feedback e distorsioni pesantissime ma anche passaggi dolci ed eterei, cowbell a volontà, tastiere qua e là, la bellissima voce di Stefanie Zaenker (anche abilissima dietro ai tamburi) a fare da contraltare a quella del bassista Francis Beringer, e la sensazione di assistere a qualcosa di sonicamente grandioso e unico.
Qualche esempio? L’incedere violento e minaccioso da vero “brano storto” degno dei migliori anni ‘90 di “Lodestar” viene subito ammorbidito, ma solo nel piglio allegro e fintamente scanzonato, dalla successiva “A bailar con cuarantena”, che nasconde una notevole complessità strumentale (il videoclip è da non perdere). Mille dinamiche, cambi di tempo e di umore, ma senza la pesantezza e la claustrofobia che, spesso, accompagnano album pretenziosamente più complicati.
Qui i cambi sono funzionali a creare un’offerta musicale sempre varia e intrigante, frutto certamente degli ascolti e dell’esperienza dei musicisti, e della voglia di mettersi continuamente in gioco. “Ascolto un po’ di tutto” – certamente i Caustic Casanova possono affermarlo senza suonare ridicoli.
Il culmine, ovviamente, è rappresentato dalla lunga “Bull Moose against the Sky”, messa come si confà in chiusura dell’album. 22 minuti e rotti in cui, come nella più genuina tradizione progressive (ahia, l’ho detto), troviamo davvero di tutto: intro con marcetta, intermezzi psichedelici dove la ripetitività alla Tool la fa da padrone, aperture trionfanti, blast beats, riferimenti alle altre canzoni dell’album, e una novità a ogni angolo.
Una band da seguire, gente che non si prende troppo sul serio ma che fa davvero sul serio, musicisti in evoluzione continua e capaci di regalare grandi emozioni a chi si voglia avvicinare al loro folle mondo con curiosità.
Canzoni significative: A bailar con cuarantena, Bull Moose against the Sky.
Taken from an Italian language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Enrico Meloni.
Remember October? That month, already so long ago… Championed by many great albums, one of them soaring high among all you crazies in the heavy underground was the new Caustic Casanova album. Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is their fifth album and goes the way of punk and psych, garage, stoner and prog. The four form Washington DC give you five highly varied tracks, but all of them carry that wild and kind of weird nervous energy with them. Offering their take on exciting and riveting rock. Opener Anubis Rex might be the easiest song for the listener to fall in love with, with a nineties takes on alternative rock, that punk spirit and all delivered with something catchy and poppy. Majestic, pure flowing bass work and electrifying guitars. The dual vocals of bassist Francis Beringer and drummer Stefanie Zaenker give it this screeching harmony, which fit their pitch and the lyrics perfectly. Following track Lodestar goes big in the style of rhythms and time signatures, giving you in their shortest track of the album an incredible adventurous and highly unpredictable, almost manic love story for prog and punk. After which two tracks follow before you get to twenty-two minute long closing punk prog opera extraordinaire Bull Moose Against The Sky, which defies all the genre labels you already had trouble pinning on them to begin with. For some strange reason it brought memories of screaming Home, Home On The Range during wild night on a rooftop somewhere in a city in the south of the Netherlands. Wanting my buddies to join in; but they didn’t even know the song. So they were just screaming something else, something about tsunamis and dogs that had died. Anyway, weird memories on this strange morning, where we listen to an acapella opening of the Bull Moose Against The Sky track. What follows is not just a song, but a story, a musical, a wild tale that would fit perfectly in a theatre. Absurd? Probably, but so is the song, in scope, scale and ability to take you with it to a different place and time… Glass Enclosed Nerve Center took some time to land, to really come to grips with it… But once it grips, it won’t let go, and will encase you and all of your nerves…
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Joop Konrad.
Caustic Casanova es una banda formada en 2005 que -a juzgar por sus reproducciones en Spotify- aún es un secreto a voces. Su ambición compositiva y originalidad al margen del rock convencional los ha alejado de acceder a un público mayor. “Glass enclosed nerve center” es su quinto álbum, el cual explora su particular cóctel de Sludge metal cruzado con rock progresivo, ejecutado con intensidad post-hardcore y de acentuado gusto por las disonancias.
Teniendo en cuenta lo último, una de las primeras bandas con la cual puede conectarse a este cuarteto de Washington DC son los legendarios Melvins. También hay pizcas de Fugazi y At The Drive-in. Caustic Casanova suena retorcido, complejo, aventurero, feroz y similar a muy pocos artistas. Éstas características lo tornan un producto difícil para el oyente promedio, pero quien pueda adentrarse en los laberínticos mapas de esas composiciones con escaso apego al formato canción, los valorará con gran estima.
El álbum se compone de sólo cinco canciones, las tres iniciales con una duración aproximada de 4 minutos y las dos restantes con un minutaje propio del rock progresivo de los 70’. Astutamente, la apertura con “Anubis Rex” es la más acelerada, melódica y “concreta” de todas ellas, incluyendo las guitarras de Andrew Yonki y Jake Kimberley en formato llamativamente melódico y las creativas y cambiantes baterías de Stefanie Zaekner comandando el ataque sonoro. En esta canción, al igual que en toda la obra, predominan largos desarrollos instrumentales salpicados por las voces entrelazadas de la baterista y el bajista Francis Beringer.
Le sigue “Lodestar”, ya con unos riffs propios del metal más moderno beneficiados por afinaciones bajas (concretamente, la cuerda más grave de las guitarras y el bajo en La). Éstos, que parecen conectar con el búfalo de la letra y el videoclip, se intercalan con pasajes más psicodélicos, destacando los tensos ambientes generados por guitarras con abundancia de efectos y tritonos incorporados, de esos que Black Sabbath aplicara en su canción homónima para definir el heavy metal. La económica producción del videoclip da la pauta del alcance comercial de la banda, algo que igualmente no parece ser su prioridad. A continuación, “A bailar con cuarentena” (sic) es aún más extraña, con su funk robótico casi bailable que precede a los enmarañados cortes y riffs que tanto agradan a la banda. Otro sello distintivo a esta altura del álbum es el trabajo de las voces, casi siempre armonizadas y mayormente limpias. Seguramente a algún “headbanger” esto podrá molestarle, pero en lo personal me parece interesante.
Los muy cambiantes y exóticos 10 minutos de “Shrouded Coconut” poseen una desquiciada construcción llena de modulaciones, emparentada a algunos tramos de King Crimson. Aquí las voces tardan casi 4 minutos en aparecer, tornándose bastante más agresivas en los cortes cercanos a los 7 minutos, momento en que la canción deriva a una sección densa decididamente Sludge metal y con guitarras acoplando a la Sonic Youth, para luego culminar a puro noise. El cierre con “Bull moose against the sky” es una locura de 22 minutos imposible de resumir en la que conviven voces a capella con baterías marciales, hardcore puro y duro y ritmos densos que se interconectan como si se tratase de varias canciones a la vez.
Caustic Casanova ha creado uno de los discos más personales y originales del 2022. Solo por eso ya merecen una oportunidad si te atraen las emociones intensas.
Taken from a Spanish language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by thayil80.
What a joy this record is. Now based in Frederick, Maryland, and Upstate or Upstate-ish New York with a style no more easy to pin down, the post-hardcore-infused progressive heavy noise rock of Caustic Casanova has never come across in a recording so full and vibrant as it does on their 2022 album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center (review here). It’s like they took the wretched weirdness of our times and set it all up on a series of spinning plates, and they spend the entire album running back and forth making sure none of the plates stop until finally, at the end, they take all the plates and smash them over your fucking head because what are you doing watching plates spin anyway? It’s a very special, very specific, very heavy kind of magic they capture.
If you haven’t heard that album yet — the release was early last month on Magnetic Eye, so you’re by no means late — the stream is of course at the bottom of this post. The four-piece (maybe traveling as a trio, I don’t know) toured to Monolith on the Mesa in New Mexico in Sept. and will head south from Maryland in December to continue to support it along the Southeastern Seaboard, hitting the Carolinas, Georgia and Kentucky on a six-shows-six-nights jaunt that wraps up their year nicely. Before they go, drummer/vocalist Stefanie Zaenker is filling in on drums for War on Women on a tour that starts tonight in Massachusetts — more info in this Facebook post — and runs until Dec. 7. I only expect more touring to take place in 2023, and I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t thinking of putting together a fest-ish lineup just to try to book them for it playing Glass Enclosed Nerve Center in its glorious entirety.
Taken from a 2022 Winter Tour Preview by JJ Koczan.
CAUSTIC CASANOVA has taken another step forward with Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, unleashing their excellent heavy rock/post punk to a new and way more prog level with awesome results, including the modern-day version of The Who’s A Quick One with the 22 plus minute proggy adventure Bull Moose Against The Sky. An absolute Album Of The Year candidate and like nothing else you will hear this year.
~ Rich Piva (Musipedia of Metal, FuzzDoomRip)
Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is, in a word, infectious. Here’s an album that kicks off at a fiery, Dinosaur-Jr.-meets-King-Gizzard-And-The-Lizard-Wizard pace with “Anubis Rex,” and it never really slows down until that 20-plus-minute closer. As experimental as this album is, it could become a crossover delight; the frantic riffing on tracks like “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” occasionally calls to mind bands like The Hives or The White Stripes, making this an album that should appeal to fans of various genres.
~ Pat Schober (Monster Riff)
Taken from a piece with two reviews of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” written by Rich Piva and Pat Schober respectively.
There are some albums that simply defy categorization. Though they may sound familiar in this way or that, they simply refuse to be pigeonholed.
Caustic Casanova’s Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is one of those albums. Eclectic, energetic, and infectiously catchy, this record takes the upbeat nature of The Hives, channels it through the eclectic songwriting of Primus, then drapes it in the fun, carefree guitar heroics of J Mascis and Dinosaur Jr.—all before injecting undercurrents of Prog Rock, Sludge, Stoner Rock, and Metal.
Welcome to the sonic buffet that is Caustic Casanova.
Caustic Casanova is a Washington, DC-based four-piece made of:
- Francis Beringer – Bass, Vocals
- Stefanie Zaenker – Drums, Percussion, Vocals, Keyboards
- Andrew Yonki – Guitar
- Jake Kimberley – Guitar
The band has been active for more than a decade now, with their first album, Someday You Will Be Proven Correct dropping in 2012 through Mad Love Records.
Release Date: October 7, 2022
Label: Magnetic Eye Records
Track 1 – Anubis Rex
“Anubis Rex” kicks off the album with the fun guitar heroics of Dinosaur Jr. The song is chaotic and catchy like King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard at their very best, and the enthusiastic cowbell carries us through the song like a familiar friend. Eventually, the energetic lead guitar takes us to an enthralling solo backed by a thick riff and pounding drums.
And while “Anubis Rex” is an instrumentally layered track, it’s also the first glimpse at how complex the lyrics on Glass Enclosed Nerve Center can become. Just take a look at its lyrics:
A mountain in my mouth
Oh and a temple of teeth
How will I call to you when the sun’s fallen into the sea?
My skin cracked, my throat dry
Oh, my pupils are dumb
With vigor, come hither, and the next sweet shiver to come
Our story, it’s boring, oh but we tell it well
On this winter morning, at least we have a story to tell
Our lungs deflated like the old birthday balloons we breathed in
I have exhaled you, listening to the whirling wind
I thought I was in love before I knew you, I knew you
Track 2 – Lodestar
“Lodestar” is dark and Psychedelic—like a combination of Black Mountain and Ghost Frog. But despite its heavier, gloomier undertones, there’s a certain charming levity in its delivery.
Track 3 – A Bailar Con Cuarentena
“A Bailar Con Cuarentena” is a tightly wound ball of frantic energy, liable to explode at any moment. The song is as precise, quick, and upbeat as a single from The Hives or Eagles of Death Metal.
As on “Anubis Rex,” the lyrics are the hero on this track. Just check out the opening lines:
It’s business in the front, and piety in the back
The Autozone messiah says come on in let’s have a snack
We’re grilling sacred cows, it’s conquistador cuisine
A bailar con quarantine urges our spanglish language magazine
Track 4 – Shrouded Coconut
“Shrouded Coconut” features an explosive, jazzy intro before finding its true sound: a sort of psychedelic Primus with a massive bass and frantic guitarwork.
At more than nine minutes in length, “Shrouded Coconut” is the second-longest track on the album, and it experiments with a variety of different sounds and techniques (including an intriguing section about halfway through that sounds like a temple theme from an old Zelda game).
“Shrouded Coconut” is also the closest we’ll get to Doom on this record, as the song concludes with crushing, distorted guitars delivered slow and low.
Track 5 – Bull Moose Against the Sky
So far on Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, there’s been no telling what one song or another will be about. And “Bull Moose Against the Sky” is no different.
This is an eight-part song about some of the landmark moments in Theodore Roosevelt’s life—including moments before and after his time as President of the United States.
Running more than 22 minutes long, it’s an ambitious song on the same level as “Twenty-Twenty” by IKITAN.
It’s a captivating track filled with dashes of Doom and Heavy Metal—but I would highly recommend listening with the lyrics nearby so you can follow along.
Final Score: 8.5/10
Standout Tracks: “Anubis Rex”
Pros: Put simply, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is charming. The album can certainly rock hard (see the heaviest moments of “Shrouded Coconut” and “Bull Moose Against the Sky” as examples), but there’s an irresistible catchiness woven throughout this record.
With the album’s inherent Pop/Alt Rock sensibilities as its foundation, everything built on top of it only adds to that initial charm.
Cons: This could easily become the most controversial album of the year, one that listeners either immediately love or unapologetically reject for its unapologetic experimentation.
Ultimately, the strength of this album rests in the strength of that experimentation—and there’s plenty of mad science happening here.
“Bull Moose Against the Sky,” for example, is long enough and complicated enough to have been a standalone EP.
Here, though, it’s delivered as a single track. Between its enormous length and obscure storytelling, it’s a demanding listen. And while overall enjoyable, I often found myself wishing for a reprieve just to catch my breath.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Patrick Schober.
Delivering heavy cerebral prog but with a melodic sensibility, Washington DC’s Caustic Casanova pack ideas tight; a bit of math here, a side order of racket there. CC are a post-grunge XTC, and their irresistible fifth is an album that just keeps on giving. 8/10
Taken from the November 2022 issue of Classic Rock magazine.
CAUSTIC CASANOVA DISCUSS NORTH DAKOTA’S INSPIRATION FOR NEW ALBUM ‘GLASS ENCLOSED NERVE CENTER’, THE MEANINGS BEHIND THE TRACKS + MORE!
Chart Rank: 2
Turbulent deviations and chaotic interjections are the rules of thumb in CAUSTIC CASANOVA’s maniacal imagination; so skewered and fractured is it from the status quo unpredictability is all you have to depend upon. On their triumphant fifth album, DC’s most eccentric bunch burst through the levées separating their bizarro world from our own, flooding our innocent brains with weird and wonderful tales born out of bedlam and fuelled by anarchic fever dreams. No matter how many times the record spins Glass Enclosed Nerve Center never ceases to thrill; as wild as Roosevelt’s thundering buffalo and as tempestuous as any one of 2022’s tropical storms, your minds will never be the same emerging from this lawless powderkeg.
Gli americani Caustic Casanova si avvalgono di una vasta gamma di suoni macchinosi e sperimentali che inoltrano il loro progressive rock roccioso verso nuovi schemi tecnici e lineari. Il loro sound elettrizzante nasce nel 2005 come trio composto da due cantanti: Stefanie Zaekner e Francis Beringer, rispettivamente batterista e bassista; insieme a loro completa la ritmica il chitarrista Andrew Yonki. Nel loro percorso si cerca di trovare subito un collegamento solido a tratti dissonante, che nei primi anni viaggia sopra sonorità noise furiose e spesso sfocia nello stoner classico. Dopo aver aggiunto una seconda chitarra, Jake Kimberley, nel 2019, il gruppo fa il salto definitivo con l’album God How I Envy The Deaf, che li lancia nel vortice estremo e math rock del momento. Nel quinto lavoro in studio Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, prodotto per l’etichetta newyorkese Magnetic Eye Records, i Nostri fanno ricorso a tutti i loro punti di forza con un’avventurosa e potente esecuzione. Il timbro violento delle chitarre avvolge le voci soliste melodiche e una ritmica creativa, dando alla luce un album espansivo e originale.
L’energia corposa di “Anubis Rex” apre le danze in modo travolgente, un brano breve che trascina l’ascoltatore con un’adrenalina pazzesca. La ritmica infernale scorre dolcemente, con un emblematico timbro della batteria e una linea vocale melodica. Nelle distorsioni poi si esprime al meglio il concetto nuovo della band, che si concentra su tematiche furiose, ma allo stesso tempo orecchiabili. Una buona apertura che si aggancia alla seguente “Lodestar”, il primo singolo pubblicato. Qui ci sono i primi passaggi fuori tempo e irregolari di matrice math rock, con un tappeto di sonorità stile Melvins. La sua introduzione unica esplora un’atmosfera tagliente che si calma sulla voce armonica e ben orchestrata di Zaekner, per poi stravolgersi nella voce oscura di Beringer, che descrive un illusione ovattata e disturbante creando così una performance accattivante. “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” invece ha un’altra introduzione aggressiva, con vibrazioni intense che vengono colorate dal campanaccio suggestivo, la struttura poi si sposta in qualcosa di delirante che esplode nel finale, rimbalzando con facilità in un’emozione magnetica e frizzante. Il cambiamento musicale continua il suo duro lavoro armonico nelle note di “Shrouded Coconut”, una lunga composizione che lascia libero spazio alla classe del batterista e al groove sfrenato che fa pensare a una suite monumentale dei primi Primus. Dopo la prima parte surreale e rumorosa il brano rallenta di poco e le voci accennano frasi incomprensibili, prima di buttarsi di nuovo nel caos finale; in quest’opera notiamo la grande bravura dei nostri nel saltare come una scheggia da un genere musicale all’altro. A seguire il capolavoro finale “Bull Moose Against The Sky”. Il brano si prende tutto il lato B dell’album, con i suoi ventidue minuti di follia, una canzone che riserva molti colpi di scena e ci trascina dentro un viaggio ipnotico senza fine. Una degna chiusura affascinante, che ci attira in un grande e polveroso luogo immaginario.
Glass Enclosed Nerve Center è un disco selvaggio che in maniera semplice e divertente affronta tutti i relativi rischi, avvolti da un’immagine ben definita, che il quartetto di Washington riesce ad esplorare al meglio, con un potenziale invidiabile. 7.5/10
When a band is as eccentric and obsessive as Caustic Casanova, there’s just no way to pin it down. Do these folks play stoner rock? Power prog a la Rush? Melodic post punk that wouldn’t offend a Superchunk or Poster Children fan? Ear-blistering metal that wipes away all traces of what came before?
Yeah. For starters.
Though this is easily the band’s most punky and accessible set, despite the sometimes extreme length of the songs, Caustic Casanova is merely adding to its repertoire. The band has never looked back, and this set is astonishingly forward-looking. While the band references Melvins in its press notes, I hear more and more Jawbox. And Jesus Lizard. The sludge and metal influences are still blasting away, but these songs really cook (even the 22-minute opus that fills the flip side).
And look! J. Robbins twisted the knobs (hardly a shocker, I know) for his fellow D.C. artists, and he has thinned out the sound just enough to allow even more weirdness to bleed out of the speakers. For me, though, what is really striking about this album is just how kinetic and driving these songs are. Sludge at the speed of sound, or something like that.
Whatever it is, this sucker moves. And the increasing emphasis on punk and hardcore simply ramps up the pressure. Fans of early CC might not recognize everything here, but the roots were set down early. Relentlessly inventive, Caustic Casanova has created one of the great albums of the year. Don’t pigeonhole these folks, or they will come for your souls. I should know. They’ve owned mine for years.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Jon Worley.
Eclectic prog/punk/sludge quartet Caustic Casanova (great band name) are back with their fifth album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center. The album is a real mish-mash of styles and songs, ranging from the three-minute angular “Lodestar” to a couple of epic (one really epic) tracks, all loaded with guitar histrionics and sardonic vocals. If a punk band decided to embrace bands like The Mars Volta, they might sound like this.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Mike Huck.
You more than likely have that one band or artist you absolutely adore, so much so it gives an indefinable sense of disappointment to find that other people like them too. Almost like they’re exclusively your band, purely for your own selfish listening pleasure when you’ve got the house/car to yourself. You probably only casually mention them in passing with other muso’s because they’re yours, and not for sharing.
Punk ethos and hard rocking psych’s Machiavellian maestro’s Caustic Casanova are precisely that band. For over a decade their shape-shifting smorgasbord of genre-free lunacy has either delighted or provoked many head-scratching “WTF’s” depending on the listener.
One constant through the years for this Washington DC three/four piece has been an unstoppable sense of this being “a fun thing to do”, and effortless musicianship that frankly takes the biscuit compared to almost anyone else on the outer fringes of Rock. And with “Glass Enclosed Nerve Centre” the band throw everything at the wall to see what sticks; and it seems that pretty much everything did; there are moments on this latest album that transcend any form of genre identity or identifiable forebearers. And yet it Rocks with a capital “R” The album has a direction of travel from reasonably straight Heavy Rock underpinnings to polyrhythmic Psychedelic madness via the lesser travelled possibilities of Stoner and Doom Metal…
…and New England folk.
And Theodore Roosevelt.
You’re not going to like it, don’t bother listening. Definitely not for everyone, it’s hard to imagine anyone actually enjoying this record. In fact, don’t even read this review.
They’re mine. 90/100
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by James L. Turner.
CAUSTIC CASANOVA haben sich mit großen Buchstaben “Stoner”, “Progressive” und “Psychedelic” auf die Fahnen geschrieben. Die Trennung der Stile findet dabei weit weniger statt, als es hier jetzt erscheinen mag. Man kann in jedem der Songs Einflüsse ausmachen, was das ganze ziemlich interessant und abwechslungsreich gestaltet, zumal das ganze noch durch coole Soli und dicke Breaks garniert wird! Vom ersten Song an überzeugt “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” durch ausgesprochen durchgängige Härte, mitreißende Riffs und absolute Kompromisslosigkeit.
Geschwindigkeitstechnisch wird auch aus dem Vollen geschöpft, sodass man z. B. in “Shrouded Coconut” oder dem epischen zwanzig Minuten Hammer “Bull Moose Against The Sky” auch gemäßigtere Passagen vorfindet, die dann von einem geilen Groove und einer überraschenden Melodie gezeichnet sind. Somit entwickelt sich das neueste Werk von CAUSTIC CASANOVA zu einem wahren Geheimtipp. Jedoch findet der Groove schnell Gefallen und bereitet somit wirklich Spaß. Und neben den vorhandenen handwerklichen Fähigkeiten ist das doch eigentlich das Wichtigste. Hut ab, davon wollen wir mehr hören!
Taken from a German language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Thomas Mueller.
Iarăși, băieții ăștia nu sunt pe felia mea cu magiun, mi-am dat seama de la primele acorduri, dar dacă tot au ajuns pe la mine, hai să nu fiu porc și să le dau o șansă. Oricum, uitându-mă pe lista cântecelor de pe Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, nu ai prea des ocazia de a recenza un album care să conțină o melodie de 22 de minute și 21 de secunde.
Când un cântec de 22 de minute nu pare unul de 22 de minute, atunci oamenii ăia chiar au știut ce să facă cu muzica.
Discul este unul care ar putea rula liniștit pe RociFm, bine, asta în cazul în care băieții ăia ar ști mai mult de 100 de melodii și alea apărute atunci când Magdin era lumina rock-ului pe TVR.
Casanova au de toate pentru toți, punk de intesitate medie, un sound de hard rock care trage perdeau destul de des și un progresiv nu prea încărcat. Un album recomndat? Ofc, băgați mare.
Taken from a Romanian language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Mihai Vasilescu.
Loved this album from start to finish. A refreshing take on the genre with replay value for the ages. Highly recommended.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center.”
Το κουαρτέτο Caustic Casanova απο τη Washington, D.C. δηλώνει ότι δεν ανήκει σε κάποιο είδος, και αυτό είναι κατανοητό, καθώς το αρκετά ενδιαφέρον 5ο τους άλμπουμ, ‘Glass Enclosed Nerve Center’ έχει στοιχεία progressive rock, doom, sludge και post punk. Σίγουρα ένας δίσκος που εκτός των άλλων, τραβάει και την προσοχή.
Οσον αφορά το track listing, πολύ ενδιαφέρον είναι το γεγονός ότι όσο περνάνε τα τέσσερα tracks του άλμπουμ, κάθε ενα από αυτά είναι πιο εξεζητημένο αλλα και πιο αφιλόξενο για τον ακροατή.
Το εισαγωγικό ‘Anubis Rex’ είναι ενα φιλόξενο, παιχνιδιάρικο prog rock κομμάτι, που θα μπορούσε να χρησιμοποιηθεί σαν theme κάποιου anime, καθώς έχει περίσσια ενέργεια. Σε αυτό το κομμάτι, κυρίαρχες είναι οι αρμονίες ανάμεσα στις δύο κιθάρες.
Το δεύτερο κομμάτι, ‘Lodestar’ έχει μια αρκετά tool esque εισαγωγή, θυμίζει αυτή του Stinkfist.
Το τρίτο κομμάτι, ‘A bailar con carantena’, έχει αρκετά groovy riffs, και μαζί με το ‘Anubis Rex’ είναι αυτά με την περισσότερη ενέργεια.
Groovy riffs υπάρχουν και στο επόμενο, το οποίο φέρνει και το Doom στοιχείο στον δίσκο, γενικά τα δύο τελευταία κομμάτια είναι αρκετά doom-ώδη, έχοντας φυσικά και τα στοιχεία των προηγούμενων κομματιών.
Το 22λεπτο ‘Bull Moose against the Sky’, το οποίο καλύπτει ολόκληρο το B-side, περιέχει οτι έχει ακουστεί προηγουμένως, και αποτελεί αντιπροσωπευτικό δείγμα του τι μπορεί να κάνουν οι Caustic Casanova.
Τα ενίοτε “in your face” θεατρικά φωνητικά της Stefanie Zaekner και του Francis Beringer, έχουν ξεκάθαρα μηνύματα με εμφανείς πηγές.
Για παράδειγμα :
‘Thought Police’ απο το 1984, και ‘Who’s side are you on?’
Αν και είναι ‘καθαρά’, τα φωνητικά δημιουργούν αρκετές φορές ενα άβολο κλίμα που συνοδεύουν τα μηνύματα που αναφέραμε, δένοντας έτσι το στιχουργικό με το συνθετικό στοιχείο, φέρνοντας όμως και την αντίθεση ανάμεσα στο groove και την ιδιομορφία.
Τα κομμάτια απο μόνα τους είναι αρκετά ικανοποιητικά, αλλά ο δίσκος έχει περισσότερη αξία και ουσία στο σύνολο του, ολόκληρος. Βοηθάει επίσης η πλήρης διάρκεια του δίσκου, και το ότι το πρώτο side έχει αρκετά καλό pacin, με σύντομα, accessible κομμάτια. Ίσως να μην αποτελεί top 10 material αλλα σίγουρα αξίζει μερικές ακροάσεις.
Taken from a Greek language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Πασχάλης Γιαμαλής.
CAUSTIC CASANOVA is a band who defies genre classification. On their new album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, they mix driving grooves, mind-melting mathiness, heavy breakdowns and perky melodic punk (among other stylistic experiments) for a blend that’s wildly inventive and jarring yet infectious.
To help celebrate the release of their new record, we asked them to compile a list of their own favorite top ten genre-bending bands. Like Caustic Casanova themselves, these bands simply won’t be pigeonholed by traditional stylistic confines, and yet they do what they do with total confidence and pretty much no concern for what rules they’re breaking.
Rest of article HERE.
Taken from an article entitled “Caustic Casanova’s Ten Favorite Genre-Bending Bands,” written by Francis Beringer, Andrew Yonki and Jacob Kimberley, with an introduction by Karol Kamiński.
Nos vamos hasta la capital norteamericana para dar rienda suelta a la trigonometría expresada en nuestro DISCO DE LA SEMANA. La quinta entrega del cuarteto Caustic Casanova llega como su oferta más ambiciosa hasta la fecha, repartiendo una versatilidad estilística sumida en un mundo de completa anarquía instrumental, libre de fronteras y leyes, un laberinto incoherente lleno de diversos puertas que conducen a nuevos pasadizos para perdernos en este bucle infinito que es “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”.
En su peculiaridad se encuentra su originalidad y desde que le damos play y nos dan un perfecto resumen del álbum en un tentempié como es “Anubis Rex”, sabemos que entramos en una odisea llena de diversión y muchísimo enriquecimiento musical en base a su caos sonoro progresivo, lleno de tendencias que viran constantemente hacía un estilo u otro. Si uno por ejemplo va directamente a su cierre, sería hacer trampas en un “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” reservándose para ese prestigio en su último acto, “Bull Moose Against The Sky”, una razón de mucho peso y más de 20 minutos para el credo de Caustic Casanova, y la razón de porque este es el DISCO DE LA SEMANA.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” es un trabajo que va creciendo en su propia mutación, no solo de composiciones más largas a medida que avanza el álbum, también en la propia ecuación planteada por los norteamericanos para hacer un redondo que se desmarque de esa velocidad de curvatura.
La magia aquí se desprende para que en medio de esa vorágine dominante a sus alternaciones, se consigan crear minutos pegadizos, propensos al surrealismo plasmado en el firmamento de Caustic Casanova. Magnifico ese avance creado en “Lodestar” pero es por los minutos de “A Bailar Con Cuarentena”, con ese guiño a los Melvins que prácticamente se hace omnipresente en todo “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”, los que llevan sus diferentes ángulos en riffs masivos y alocados. Bendita sección rítmica comandada por el vértigo de Stefanie Zaenker en los parches y el bajista Francis Beringer. Una sesión de acupuntura extendiéndose hasta “Shrouded Coconut” en una especie de intervalo recogido como antesala para el monstruo compositivo que espera al final del mismo con su mencionado cierre.
Precisamente en este tramo del álbum dónde esos conductos hacía los riffs masivos, dejan de lado sus ecuaciones progresivas para entrar en el abismo hacía el heavy rock que acaba recuperándose de alguna forma, y reconvirtiéndose en otro giro más de este “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”, en su proeza final.
Como unos excursionistas redescubriendo nuevas partes de un género no exento de sorpresas, las vertientes poderosas del mismo “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”, tienen su punto de encuentro en “Bull Moose Against The Sky”, el buque insignia para manifestar el sonido de los Caustic Casanova más recientes en toda su expandida búsqueda a su estilo característico. Innumerables vueltas de tuerca a diversos géneros se confeccionan en una infinidad de elementos sorpresivos. La dupla vocal entre los mencionados Francis y Stefanie, son la guinda de un pastel enrevesado por torbellinos de riffs y un variopinto firmamento liderado por los dos mástiles de 6 cuerdas presentados con Andrew Yonki y Jake Kimberley.
El ingenio llama a las puertas de la locura, la última entrega de Caustic Casanova es lo que yo llamo un disco para paladares exigentes, no del gusto de todo, pero reinantes en ese desconcierto que habita en todo “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”, a esta hazaña solo se le puede alabar por su amplia gama de cálculos infinitos, de golpes y contrastes varios, un disco lleno de posibilidades dónde definitivamente se presenta la baza más importante de Caustic Casanova; su infinita creatividad.
Taken from a Spanish language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Ruben Herrera. “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” was named Album of the Week.
Right off the bat, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center stands out from Caustic Casanova’s previous outings by means of its song layout. With the group having referenced Rush in their music at least once before, the way that this album pits four bite-sized rockers against a colossal twenty-plus minute epic certainly reminiscent of a 2112 or Hemispheres. Of course, the actual music remains well within the context of the group’s punked up genre blend of post-hardcore, alternative, noise rock, and sludge. With some prog, as a treat.
The opening “Anubis Rex” provides an interesting mix of sounds with its furious bass-driven charge flavored with some bombastic fanfare and periodic Americana twangy strums. “Lobestar” scales back the pace but keeps an upbeat flavor. “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” and “Shrouded Coconut” stand out for their off-time rhythms, the former applying some almost Latin flavor and wild call-and-response vocals while the latter puts their prog sensibilities to their heaviest extents. It’s the sort of stuff that probably shouldn’t work as well as it does and features some of the band’s tightest playing to date.
In contrast to the opening half of songs’ slapdash tendencies, the twenty-two minutes of “Bull Moose Against the Sky” takes a more decidedly methodical approach. The acapella introduction certainly sets the stage for a more grandiose presentation and the subsequent riff sets almost dip into doom territory with their slower plods and hazy tone. Individual movements are trickier to decipher than the multi-part suites of old, but there’s a sense of underlying escalation in its themes of political intrigue as it gradually gets even heavier through the last eleven minutes. There’s certainly precedence for the band to take this long-form approach and this just might be the best instance of it at work.
Despite boasting a shorter runtime than any of their past outings at forty-five minutes, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center might see Caustic Casanova at their most ambitious. The classic prog album setup certainly works in their favor as the first four songs present their eclectic ideas in concise action while its longer epic offers its own elaborate appeal. I might still prefer 2019’s God How I Envy the Deaf by a hair, but Caustic Casanova remains one of the more unorthodox rock bands out there.
Taken from a review by Chris Latta.
Băieții ăștia fac multe pe albumul ăsta. Combină multe chestii, destule sonorități, adică diversitate. Știu, știu, poate nu-i cel mai bun termen. Par foarte preciși în ceea ce au în capul lor, deși nu sunt, se văd niște scăpări fantastice prin unele locuri. Însă discul este solid, vorbesc serios, solid, și merită din toate punctele de vedere ascultat.
Taken from a Romanian language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by BogDan.
CAUSTIC CASANOVA’s decision to augment the long-standing trio by adding Jake Kimberly on guitars bears fruit from the start, opener ‘Anubis Rex’ robust and invigorating/-ed, kicking off with some hybrid of spaghetti western, cock rock and surf, a dual-string attack clearly suiting the band. Add to this the trident-pronged vocals, and the D.C. act arsenal’s chock-full o’ ingredients that should guarantee success. But can they put their tools to good use over the course of Glass Enclosed Nerve Center without wandering in the process?
If ‘Lodestar’ is any indication, yes, and since the band’s always had rather an “everything up to and including the kitchen sink” approach, maybe I shouldn’t be worried. Jagged in a somewhat noise-rocky sort of way, injections of techno-freakout and a smattering of high school pep rally enthusiasm pave the way into the PIXIES / CAKE-influenced ‘A Bailar Con Cuarantena’ which is, if anything, even more of an earworm on a rollercoaster than the album’s been thus far.
At 22+ minutes ‘Bull Moose Against The Sky’ could have been a catastrophe, and probably “should” have been, taking up over half of CAUSTIC CASANOVA’s 5th as it does. Instead, the heady transitions between CLUTCH-ed lyrical eloquence, The Great American Songbook’s sense of longing and frontiersmen-ship, abrasive, lumbering riffing (Remember the two guitars now? You will if you’d forgotten.) and climactic, well…climax…is less whiplash-inducing and more strangely naturally flowing than expected.
Your traditional metal fan’s honestly not going to find a lot here, but for the more open-minded fans of virtually any other style of music, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is a waystation on the trek of a band that is genuinely onto something deserving of attention and respect. 4.5/6
Taken from a review “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Lord Randall.
Quinto álbum de esta banda revival del rock setentero, que como se sabe siempre tuvo una cuota de “heavy” de algún u otro modo, de esta manera Caustic Casanova, lo único de moderno que tiene es el sonido que definitivamente no pudieron captarlo de una forma tan “vintage”, y son sus extraños experimentos lo que les da cierto atractivo.
La banda son: Stefanie Zaekner en batería y voz, Francis Beringer en bajo y voz, y Andrew Yonki y Jake Kimberley en guitarras.
El disco abre con “Anubis Rex” una canción totalmente de inspiración en los clásicos del rock, con algunos momentos en los que los riffs suenan pesados, pero ya es una cuestión de producción de estudio. “Lodestar” es la mezcla perfecta entre el sonido vintage y lo moderno, en dónde al inicio pareciera que se tratara de una canción de rock pesado actual con esas afinaciones bajas y una forma hasta nu metal de riffs, sin embargo a medida que la canción avanza y más aún cuando se incluye la voz femenina la cosa se percibe como una mezcla. Y dentro de esa mezcla ellos añaden psicodelia en “A Bailar Con Cuarentena”, uno de los experimentos más locos de este trabajo. En esa misma corriente más experimental sigue “Shrouded Coconut”, nueve minutos de distintos momentos, con un final más ligado al metal que a lo vintage.
En el final con una canción de más de veinte minutos, es evidente que vas a escuchar de todo aquí y es así, no hay límites en este track, solo que todo está dirigido a lo antiguo.
Si eres de los que gusta del rock clásico, setentas y sonidos similares con una fuerte dosis de psicodelia y experimentación, pues Caustic Casanova va a darte eso y más… interesante.
Mis favoritas: “Shrouded Coconut”
Me Gustó: 78%
Taken from a Spanish language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Gocho. Same review is posted at Dongocho.blogspot.com
Caustic Casanova iz Washington DC-ja često dobija poređenja sa Borisom a što je više na ime eklektičnosti unutar jedne odlično postavljene heavy rock svirke nego na ime direktnih sličnosti. Peti album ovog benda, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, izašao za moćni Magnetic Eye ima samo pet pesama ali ovo je fantastična ploča rokenrola koji bi neko drugi nazvao eksperimentalnim, ali to ne bi u dovoljnoj meri istaklo gruv i seksepil ove svirke.
Taken from a Bosnian language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Mehmet Krljic.
Esuberanti, fantasiosi, lontani da ogni regola o classificazione: dagli stati uniti i Caustic Casanova arrivano al quinto album… l’ennesimo concentrato di riff esplosivi, ritmiche devianti, di pesantezza, di metal, di prog, di qualsivoglia cosa passi loro per l’anticamera del cervello. Non a caso ciascuno di questi cinque brani si dirige un po’ dove gli pare e piace, rendendosi indipendente… quasi dotato di vita propria: è l’unica spiegazione logica per questa costante variabilità, per questo sound eterogeneo, eclettico, totalmente ribelle… tanto da offrire molteplici linee vocali (una di queste ricorda Ozzy!) e strutture dei pezzi che passano con noncuranza dalla canonica durati tre minuti e mezzo… alla mastodontica prepotenza di una “Bull Moose Against the Sky”… macigno sonoro che va oltre i ventidue minuti! Dal rap di matrice ska di “A Bailar Con Cuarentena”, al funky stoner di “Shrouded Coconut”, dal rock schizoide di “Anubis Rex” agli intrecci sonori fuori di testa ”Lodestar”. E quel brano da ventidue minuti? Un album nell’album: stoner, doom, psichedelico, funky, prog, punk, rock classico… e forse un’altra mezza dozzina di generi più o meno noti, i quali faticano ad affacciarsi nella mia mente considerato il costante e repentino cambio tematico dell’incedere dei Caustic Casanova. Una band che prende la potenziale front woman e la sbatte dietro le pelli dei tamburi… senza però toglierle il microfono dalla bocca… quest’ultimo condiviso con il bassista. Per chiudere il cerchio, due chitarristi (il secondo è recente, portando il trio a dimensione di quartetto!) che fanno un po’ quel che gli piace, a seconda del giorno, del meteo, della sbronza della notte precedente o, più semplicemente, a seconda dell’umore, frequentemente mutevole. ‘Stoned Psych Sludge’ è il genere secondo il quale questo disco viene messo sullo scaffale. Corretto? Si, sicuramente. Ma anche no, decisamente… in quanto Caustic Casanova sono degli artisti di altissimo livello, in grado di creare musica che stuzzica, stimola, attira, incuriosisce… senza farsi mai ingabbiare dentro i vincolanti recinti di un genere o di uno stile predefiniti!
(Luca Zakk) Voto: 8/10
Taken from an Italian language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Luca Zakk.
Wer sagt, dass (Post)Punk, Noise, Indie, Psychedelic und Progressive Rock nicht friedlich auf einem Album und sogar in einzelnen Tracks koexistieren können, der hat sich dieses Album der Washington DC Rocker von Caustic Casanova noch nicht angehört.
Dieser Genre-Mix ist so wild, abstrus und gleichzeitig vereinnahmend und betörend. Das Album fasziniert in seinen fünf Tracks mit einer Spielzeit von einer dreiviertel Stunde, wobei der Closer “Bull Moose Against The Sky” mit 22 1/2 Minuten die Hälfte der Spielzeit ausmacht und diesen schon oben aufgeführten Genre-Mix nochmals vervollkommnet.
Taken from a German language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Geschrieben von AMoell.
Here is a fun, weird one that’s right up my alley. You’re getting a dynamic range of genres and vibes that is ultimately anchored in at a riffy center. This is like a blend of Like Mastodon, Baroness, Brutus, Queens of the Stone Age, and The Dead Weather
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Daniel Cordova.
Albums Of The Week: Caustic Casanova | Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
It isn’t hard to fall in love with the D.C. weirdos’ edgy brand of progressive heaviness.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Darryl Sterdan.
Never certain how things come to fruition or how life is impeded, there are moments when you have to wonder why something or someone hasn’t received the accolades it’s deserving of… or maybe even allow scribes to tear their work(s) to shreds (honestly, the latter can sometimes be fulfilling so long as it’s constructive, for both parties. But while the band’s 2015 Breaks album was the last time I heard anything from the band, Caustic Casanova had released 2019’s God How I Envy The Deaf. We’re here now though, and that’s the important thing. The band just released its new album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center (Magnetic Eye Records), and maybe with this release, life should get a little easier. Or more difficult. Depends on your perception.
My point; where was I going with this? Oh yeah, Caustic Casanova, which was a trio last I knew of the band, has expanded to a quartet. The band, made up of bassist/vocalist Francis Beringer, drummer/vocalist Stefanie Zaekner, and guitarist Andrew Yonki, now includes second guitarist Jake Kimberley who joined the band back in 2019. On Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, it’s thickened the band’s sound and I’m not mad at that. But where does the band actually “fit”? That’s the interesting thing about the group; the sound that emanates from their instruments as a collective unit extrapolates in a variety of directions. While the band has a technical prowess that allows it to find firm footing within prog rock, it extends into hard rock, pop, punk, and metal. It’s usually all intertwined within the same song, with one style taking precedence over others. The group opens with “Anubis Rex,” which has nothing to do with Anubis, the Egyptian god of old but the two-part leveled Pac Man World I’ve never played. The band quickly grabs hold of your attention, never releasing it with walls of guitars and great hand movements all over its drums. Surprising with a cowbell (We need more cowbell) this track is a pop/hard rock masterpiece with clever harmonies throughout. This is just the first track on the release, but things never go awry.
Opening with guitar experimentation, the bottom-heavy “Lodestar” is full-frontal, in-you-face, nonstop action. The band revels in the sonic explosiveness and both vocalists play off one another, at times harmonizing with one another but then with a brooding vocal delivery. If you want to know what tightness is, then it’s this because it’s unrelenting and tighter than a muskrat’s ass. The same could be said about “A Bailar Con Cuarentena,” loosely translated into “dancing in quarantine” but the band could mean something completely different, as the song gets ahold of an oddly funky groove, which expands into something brilliant. The group storms through, stops on a dime, continues, and gets lost in the revelry as we all should. Caustic Casanova is quite the conundrum though, unloading lengthy numbers like the 9+ minutes of “Shrouded Coconut,” which moves with obvious prog-like precision but is also spacious. What you may think is an instrumental as the song bounces & careens for almost 4 minutes before vocals chime in as Stefanie & Francis harmonize exquisitely. The band changes its movement and the song itself becomes something malevolent. Sure they could have probably broken up this piece into a couple of different songs but as I’m sure they probably thought, “Hey, let’s see where this goes.” And they killed it.
The odd man out here is “Bull Moose Against The Sky,” and clocking in at over 22 minutes, the band actually does allow the song to take on a life of its own. Make no mistake, this isn’t a free jazz effort allowing instruments to cross streams in an effort to see what sticks, no, this is controlled, this is organized, there is no confusion. Although, this is the moment where prog, pop, rock, and punk are allowed to find lives all their own. There are a number of movements throughout, and that’s to be expected with the band. They don’t stick to one basic melody or rhythm. It’s much too expansive for that. With this, we know Caustic Casanova is onto something BIG, much bigger than anyone can possibly express.
With Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, Caustic Casanova ravages everything in its path from start to finish. The world needs to get to know the music created by the group, not just because it’s a great release but because the band lives in a world so expansive, musically, it’s stunning
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Eddie Ugarte.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Rich Piva.
Washington, DC rockers Caustic Casanova’s “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” comes out on October 7th through Magnetic Eye Records on various vinyl formats, CD and digital. It’s one of the quirkiest, ballsiest, most fun things one can work with when it comes to album releases.
The musicianship is off the charts, the riffs are massive and angular, and the hooks swerve from disgustingly sweet to Melvins-ian.
Caustic Casanova’s music is noisy, catchy, punky, and ambitious as hell. They find a groove and ride it, or bang it around in a blender and spit out something so jarring you have to check the time index to see how far into the song you are and try to remember how it started. These adventurous riffonauts display an expansive range of sounds into their tight, hyperkinetic core and explode them outward in a kaleidoscope of progressive heavy rock exuberance. Their sharp and exultant math-meets-noise rock prowess fuses with towering sludge metal grooves, as if Sonic Youth and The Melvins went into a space trip with Kylesa and Helms Alee. Fun, unexpected and definitely addictive!
It’s not that they’re trying to be weird or showing off how clever they are. Being weird and clever is as authentic to them as brutal grooves are to Weedeater (who Caustic Casanova once covered, because, as was said in 8mm, they could).
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”.
Caustic Casanova spark the neurones on Glass Enclosed Nerve Center
Back in 2012, a band called Caustic Casanova began making waves in the US both live and with their debut album, Someday You Will Be Proven Correct; the waves grew with 2015’s Breaks, and 2019’s God How I Envy The Deaf cemented their reputation for eccentric, eclectic rock laced with psych, prog, metal, punk and the less obvious blues and soul.
Now the band (Stefanie Zaenker – Drums, Vocals, Francis Beringer – Bass, Vocals, Andrew Yonki – Guitar and Jake Kimberley – Guitar) revisit all of those genres but in new ways on their latest suitably psych-inspired album called Glass Enclosed Nerve Center.
The opener may begin with Hawaiian guitar, but ‘Annubis Rex’ quickly lays the riffs down to provide a solid base for the fun that ensues, think a heady mix of Priest, Bowie, Lizzy, Ramones and Sweet with added cowbell and sequences that make you smile. In fact, all five tracks have that irresistible mix of rock genres that work very well indeed.
‘Lodestar’ even adds some industrial grunge to great effect. ‘A Bailar Con Cuarentena’ (which, I think translates to ‘Dance With Quarantine’) brings a touch of the Peppers in the vocal styles and harmonies. The hairy ‘Shrouded Coconut’ is similar(ish) in style with the smiling riffing and even hints at Ash on the instrumental verses before the vocals join in with Zappa-esque mysteries.
The final track, ‘Bull Moose Against The Sky’ (me neither) begins with a folky, a cappella vocal, then military snare and gentle chords bring the twenty-minute opus to a climactic beginning(?) as it continues to build. It is a mark of the quality, invention and abilities of the band that this track isn’t too long… it has variation throughout and mashes yet more rock genres together successfully (and more genius cowbell), it is psyche for today and it’s done brilliantly.
This is an album that will appeal across the rock spectrum and deserves to be widely heard.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Tom Dixon.
Angefangen als Schülerband haben Caustic Casanova schon einige Höhen und Tiefen hinter sich gebracht. Umso erfreulicher, dass sich die vier psychedelischen Progger aus Washington D.C. mittlerweile nicht nur wieder auf voller Höhe, sondern mit Glass Enclosed Nerve Center auch noch eine großartige neue Platte veröffentlichen, die auch in diversen schönen Vinylfarben daher kommt.
Spannend an der neuen Platte ist die Vielfalt an Stil und die berstende Energie, die ihr inne wohnt. In der Tat bestehen auch auf dem neuen Album psychedelischer Sound, proggige Komplexität und eine fast schon punkige Rotzigkeit in seliger Koexistenz. Zumindest vergangenes Material funktioniert live offenbar auch recht gut, wie umfangreiche Touraktivitäten im US-amerikanischen Raum belegen.
Hier wird gefuzzt und gerockt
Die fünf der sechs Tracks sind kompakt im vier Minuten Schema gehalten und überzeugen dennoch als komplexe Rocker, wie beispielsweise Lodestar, das ihr HIER hören könnt. Das zentrale Stück ist natürlich der Longtrack Bull Moose against the Sky. Wie viele Songs mit einer Länge von über zwanzig Minuten ist dieser auch mehreren Einzelteilen zusammengesetzt, die mehr oder weniger schlüssig zusammen verleimt sind. Hier fließt die Musik geradezu hin, wechselt zwischenzeitlich mal Rhythmen und Gitarrenfiguren und soliert zudem fleißig. Stilistisch kommen hier auch mal zwischendurch metallische Passagen vor. Und ganz stonermäßig fuzzen die Gitarren hier ordentlich. Ein Track dieser Länge könnte durchaus noch abwechslungsreicher sein. Dennoch kommt hier keine Langeweile auf.
Ein fließender Longtrack, um sie zu knechten
Der Gesang wechselt bei Caustic Casanova zwischen männlich und weiblich dominierten Passagen, wobei Stefanie Zaenker etwas ausdrucksstärker daherkommt. Jene überzeugt auch mit ihrem Schlagzeugspiel, das mal schleppend, mal kompakt daherkommt und zusammen mit der songdienlichen Bassarbeit vom Co-Sänger und Bassisten Francis Beringer eine gute Rockbasis darstellt.
Im Gegensatz zum Vorgänger God How I Envy The Deaf hat man nun einen zweiten Gitarristen, und der macht sich im Soundbild schon bemerkbar, wobei die zusätzliche Gitarrenstimme den Sound von Caustic Casanova nicht wesentlich verändert.
Auch mit mit Glass Enclosed Nerve Center veröffentlichen Caustic Casanova eine psychedelische Heavy Rock Scheibe, die in vielen Ecken des Rockspektrum wildert und dabei Psychedelic, Metal, Prog und Punk abdeckt. 8 / 10
Taken from a German language review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Von Ingo.
Caustic Casanova certainly grabbed our attention back in 2019 when we reviewed their ‘God How I Envy the Deaf’ album. An album that befuddled and delighted in equal measure. An album that we thought was fantastic, even if we could understand that it might not be to everyone’s taste.
So, years later, have they calmed down and streamlined things? Have they fuck. Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is even more abrasive, even more progressive, even punkier and even groovier. It is a wild ride of eccentricity as only Caustic Casanova are capable of. An unforgettable blast of passionate fun that might need a notepad and pen nearby to keep track of the many different elements that make up the album.
It’s almost impossible to sum up. Not just the album but Caustic Casanova overall. There’s nothing predictable about this band and Glass Enclosed Nerve Center might be the most complete example of that. Yet, there’s no denying that all of this has an infectious quality to it. In fact, it’s downright viral.
Hilariously, the first half of the album features an array of tracks that are kept tight, energetic and ready for the radio (sort of). A handful of hits that deliver wacky and wonderful sounds. Ranging from punk-intensity to hard rock groove but filtered through Caustic Casanova wacky progressive style.
It’s with Shrouded Coconut that things really start to go off the rails but in a good way. If that can possibly make sense. It’s Caustic Casanova and here we get a track that takes a meandering route through progressive wilds. Vivid images and sounds, for over nine minutes, this band drop jaws and set the mind aflame.
Yet, once again, it almost pales in comparison to the insanity of Bull Moose Against the Sky. A twenty-two plus minute opus about the post-presidential life of Theodore Roosevelt. There’s a thin line between genius and madness, and Caustic Casanova are walking it here. In our opinion, it might be the cleverest piece of music heard this year. Although, once again, there’s not arguing with the polarising potential of this song and the album overall.
Though it seems impossible to believe that anyone who gives Glass Enclosed Nerve Center the time it deserves will come away disliking it. It’s just too damn addictive.
Final Score: 9/10
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Carl Fisher.
Caustic Casanova are a bit of a many headed beast. Definitely not a band to slot themselves into any particular genre, theirs is a mash up of sludge, doom, psyche rock with a smattering of prog. Hailing from Washington DC, they’ve garnered a local following in their 17-year career that has seen a steady stream of album releases. “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” is long player number five and finds them adding an extra guitarist in the form of Jake Kimberley and continuing to explore multiple musical dimensions.
Opening track “Anubis Rex” has a super slinky, fun riff that’s straight out of the early Seventies. Big chords in the style of Monster Truck are thrown in while combining a Thin Lizzy slant at times. A melange of hard rock, proto metal with a whiff of glam along with studio woo-hoos at the end show off a band clearly having fun. Then their really quirky side shows up with what feels like Josh Homme worship. “Lodestar” has an odd, off kilter vibe that’s like a mix of Them Crooked Vultures, Queens Of The Stone Age with a dusting of the Eagles Of Death Metal complete with the garage rock feel. Blend all of that in with Frank Zappa infused explorations on “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” – sonically and lyrically, and you have a real stop start party groove happening.
“Shrouded Coconut” expands the palette further. A psychedelic wig-out with a heavily prog-jazz slant, it manages moments of cool groove but it’s perhaps a little too “out there” for these simple ears. They have a greasiness akin to Satan’s Satyrs and Francis Berlinger’s vocals even sound similar while getting some heavy riffage going. Thus far we have a band that is pushing in all sorts of directions and seem a little unhinged at times before gathering themselves together.
Coming in at 22 minutes in length and taking all of side B, “Bull Moose Against The Sky” is the monumental, nostalgia tinged epic. A Native American sounding tribal beat follows the stand alone folk tinged vocals and introduces the track before the heady journey begins. The guitars have a slanted tone that feels very loose as they move into nice proto doom darkness. This track has been worth the price of admission alone. Seamlessly changing shape and maintaining a nice, raw feel it snakes its way through a myriad of styles and time changes. A brief electronic exploration is unexpected but strangely fits well.
“Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” is an interesting listen that will certainly keep you of your feet from an appreciation point of view. Obviously, a band that isn’t afraid to explore different styles and avenues, it sometime feels as if a little too much is going on. Side B is the winner but it’s worth giving a spin when you can’t quite decide what direction you feel like heading in.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Johnny Zed.
Youtube review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”
I love when you randomly discover a band and it just clicks right away. Then you have to explore everything they have ever released and soak it all in. It’s even better when you then find out the band is putting out a new album! I’m obviously describing Caustic Casanova here. One day Donut And The Golden Hen popped on as a suggested song and how can you not stop what you’re doing and listen to it in its entirety. I’d love to ramble on about it, but this review isn’t about God How I Envy The Deaf. I do suggest you listen to that album ASAP though.
This review IS about Caustic Casanova’s new release Glass Enclosed Nerve Center and I have a lot to say about that. Releasing 7th October, the five-track album is enclosed in a gatefold vinyl and features artwork that draws you in. It’s colorful with vector style art containing unique birds and trees. I love it and continues a similar style used on previous albums. It’s fitting because to me, both the artwork and the music can be described as fun.
Fun. There’s a word I wouldn’t typically use to describe any of the music I listen to, but when I turn on a Caustic Casanova track, I can immediately envision the members having the time of their lives playing music. Anubis Rex is a perfect example and starts this killer album off right. High energy is packed into a ‘short’ four-minute track that constantly keeps you guessing what’s coming next. There is no repetition, but it still flows smoothly leading into Lodestar with a powerful 1, 2, 3 drum beat and accompanying riffs, then silence.
Lodestar has a unique intro (as do most songs on this album) and gives me a little Voodoo Chile vibe. That quickly transitions into a catchy vocal performance by Stefanie Zaekner (drums, vocals). Yes, you read that correctly, Zaeckner sits behind the kit while singing, and listening to the impressive intricate drumming style of hers, it’s truly amazing she sings as well. Bassist and Vocalist Francis Beringer sings backing vocals harmonizing with Zaekner and they sound fantastic together. He also takes over lead vocals for a short time on this track. Lodestar was released as a single and it’s easy to hear why because after listening I find myself humming it throughout the day since I can’t sing.
A Bailar Con Cuarentena has another unique intro with a bouncy riff and cowbell! The energy remains high like their previous efforts with Berlinger taking the forefront of vocals. This riff monster of a track showcases the faultless work of dueling guitarists Andrew Yonki and Jake Kimberley playing off each other with ease.
Yonki and Kimberly continue their exquisite work on Shrouded Coconut. Zaekner and Berlinger create a groovy rhythm making it virtually impossible not to move. The vast changes throughout are interesting but strung together so well that it still sounds like one continuous song. The bands inspirations are far reaching and translate in the music. I noticed a Melvins shirt in one of their pictures and I can hear it. I actually get more of a Fantômas vibe musically at times, but way more cohesive than that trippy band. Truly impressive and a great lead into the final track of the album.
I imagine Caustic Casanova in rehearsal discussing their new album and saying, ‘Want to start this song a cappella?’ ‘Sure, let’s do it.’ ‘Want to add some shoegazy tones, we haven’t done that yet?’ ‘Alright!’ ‘Hey, let’s make it twenty-two minutes long!’ ‘Fuck yeah!’ And then the masterpiece of Bull Moose Against The Sky was born. Beringer’s voice is great a capella and Zaekner harmonizing elevates the song further. It has an Irish marching feel and the drums that come in shortly after definitely feed that vibe.
Again, the song takes many twists and turns to keep you interested throughout its twenty-two-minute journey, which these days is difficult to hold someone’s attention that long. With my rambling I’m sure I lost a lot of readers by now, Caustic Casanova, however, captivates their audience and you don’t want the song to end. I believe they felt the same way which is why they recorded such a long track!
Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is a wild journey throughout, constantly throwing something new and unexpected at you. It’s also well executed, the band is unafraid to take risks and just have fun with what they are creating. I’d imagine when Caustic Casanova performs live, I don’t believe they are playing a gig but rather throwing a party!
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Josh Schneider.
It does not matter what genre label you want to put on Caustic Casanova‘s fifth album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center. There is no box, no simple explanation from which it will not wiggle loose. What is hands-down one of the best offerings of 2022 in the stylistic umbrella that is heavy rock, it is a definitive manifestation of who the band have always been and who their potential has meant they could be. From professing love amid pedal steel and a newfound affection for synth that will continue to serve them well in “Anubis Rex,” happenstance-skewering like it’s no big deal both sides of maybe the stupidest debate in recorded human history — ‘iz medicin halp?’ — in the single lyric, “But with perfect ideology it’s impossible to spread disease,” of “A Bailar Con Cuarentena,” to narrating totalitarian anxieties via Theodore Roosevelt and the Progressive Party in “Bull Moose Against the Sky,” Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is likewise intricately composed and untethered feeling, the band — bassist/vocalist Francis Beringer, drummer/vocalist Stefanie Zænker, guitarist Andrew Yonki and, involved for the first time in the writing, second guitarist Jake Kimberley — mining creative triumph from the raw ore of human decline.
Instrumentally, lyrically and in their performance as captured here by returning producer J. Robbins (and returning mixer Andrew Schneider; it’s a winning team), with whom the band have worked for over a decade, Caustic Casanova are a blast. “Anubis Rex” begins with a sunrise of guitar, and from there the momentum is quickly established across the three shorter opening tracks — “Anubis Rex” (posted here), “Lodestar” (video posted here) and “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” (video posted here) — as the band twist from one part to the next in an establish-the-riff-then-start-the-vocals manner that speaks to their underlying foundation in post-hardcore.
Each of these three pieces, all of which are under five minutes long, offers something else, whether it’s the bass punch of “Lodestar,” the hungover, grown-up emo of “Anubis Rex” or the encapsulation of our era, percussive playfulness and restless freneticism of “A Bailar Con Cuarentena,” but they are united in perspective, in their thoughtful execution, lyrics that are smart, funny, an obvious focal point and worth committing to memory, and in their ability as players to launch into another level of heft even from was on offer in 2019’s God How I Envy the Deaf (review here). “Anubis Rex” is more about movement than weight, relatively speaking, but with its mathy beginning “Lodestar” both makes and delivers on the threat, with Caustic Casanova harnessing a sound like the band one wishes Mastodon had become, able to dizzy with complex, progressively styled changes while remaining accessible via the overarching melody and, in this case, a hook.
“A Bailar Con Cuarentena” is a highlight that builds off elements put forth in the first two tracks — thus a logical third — and lives up to having the word ‘dance’ in its title while still managing a linear narrative that moves from sipping mental champagne with shut-in multitudes to finding out why the rattlesnake’s teeth are so white. It also serves as a lead-in for the 9:40 “Shrouded Coconut,” a marked shift in approach that pulls away from the immediacy of the first three tracks in favor of a long instrumental stretch before its first verse, playing back and forth between riffs and leads over a swinging beat, spacious keys, etc., for the better part of its initial four minutes — longer than “Lodestar,” which is 3:41, for example — before Beringer and Zænker begin singing. The change can be jarring if you don’t know it’s coming, but “Shrouded Coconut” offers depth for repeat listeners in its plotted movement and increase in intensity later as they cut the tempo and shift into a feedback-laced lumber the likes of which would bring a tear to Floor‘s collective eye, ending in a solid minute of noise that feels well earned as a cap to side A.
By this time, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center has set itself up for what follows on the 22-minute “Bull Moose Against the Sky,” a genuine epic tale complete with multiple characters between Theodore Roosevelt, his wife Edith, attempted-assassin John Flammang Schrank, Jane Addams, William Howard Taft (played by Robbins) and a Greek-style chorus. The lyrics are set up as a kind of morality play, with lines and verses given to characters beginning with Beringer a capella soon joined by Zænker as they describe a fever dream of the Dakotas. This beginning, after all the noise at the end of “Shrouded Coconut,” is stark and the snare and guitar work that follows is heavy Americana wrought in such a way as to emphasize both the theatrics — all that’s missing in that start is a fife, and I’m not sure a fife would actually work there; there’s just about no way it wasn’t considered — but within the first five minutes, they’ve built on the heft in “Lodestar” and “Shrouded Coconut,” drawn themselves out through winding crunch accordingly, and begun the tale of Roosevelt deciding to run for President a third time, being shot, losing and ultimately dying.
I’ll just say it and get it out of the way: It’s the best song I’ve heard this year, as both a story/conceptual work and just as a righteous summary of the band. From the pride-swell vocals at the start to the sneaky entry after seven minutes in of the “Thriller”-style keyboards soon to swell to prominence as Edith declares/warns, “He’s a magnet/A comet/With molten and volcanic core,” to the thrust backing Robbins-as-Taft’s resolve, “I have a part to play/I’ll play it,” and the turns past the 10-minute mark between the chorus and the increasing frenzy of Roosevelt’s mindset — mirrored in the music, naturally — that give way to a post-black metal mini-stretch of blastbeats and reverb-soaked vocals from Zænker, because why not, and a bright-sounding momentary up-for-air that results in a highlight guitar solo, mapped out and no less considered than any of the words to any of these songs, before a standout verse of looming storm begins the apex movement of the piece. Yes, there is more blasting as Beringer-as-Roosevelt berates with outdated namecalling, “Weasel worders, mollycoddlers, kittle cattle, tame/The black blood crusts around the mouths of those you have betrayed,” and it comes after a sweeping and progressive noise rock tumult from which they sprint driven by suitable tremolo and, at 18:25, a resounding thud that is the signal of entry into the song’s still-heavy comedown.
Like all that feedback at the end of “Shrouded Coconut,” the denouement in “Bull Moose Against the Sky” is purposeful and makes a fitting conclusion. Roosevelt swaggers, “It’ll take more than a bullet to kill a bull moose like me,” but the keyboard has already started the dirge that the whole band will soon take up, the guitars seeming to claw for more life even as the final lines are recited in callback to earlier verses, leaving no loose ends instrumental or otherwise. So it is that Glass Enclosed Nerve Center finishes with a distant echo of guitar playing the melodic answer to “Face is marred by sweat [blood] and dust/Fails again and again and just gets up.” Silence weighs heavy when it is finished, underscoring the power of the song to make its audience feel something for this character who, in addition to sport-killing in colonialist fervor throughout his life, was a megalomaniac who sabotaged his own political party in unhinged bridge-burning zealotry. Nobody remembers that part. Everybody remembers the face on Mt. Rushmore.
And while “Bull Moose Against the Sky” is a career achievement in its own right, it is not at all the sum total of accomplishments on Glass Enclosed Nerve Center. Each of these five tracks adds something to the whole, is crucial in craft and engaging regardless of the approach one wants to take in hearing it. Touring veterans at more nearly 15 years’ remove from their 2008 debut, Imminent Eminence, Caustic Casanova are a refreshing answer to the cynicism of both “rock is dead” and “there’s too much out there and it all sounds the same.” They are between punk, metal, prog, noise and heavy rock(s) in such a way as to be on a wavelength of their own, and while that’s been the case for some time, never before have they come across as so utterly in command of their style and songwriting. They have pushed and pushed and pushed themselves creatively ever forward in an individual approach, and this is one of the best albums of 2022 with longer, enduring resonance anticipated. Some records you just know you’re going to live with. Recommended.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by JJ Koczan.
Sludge/Stoner Rockers Caustic Casanova return with their strangest album yet. Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is awash with Progressive Sludge/Stoner Rock passages and sometimes far out Experimental creative themes. The music is also lively and vastly different to what we’ve heard from the band before. If you’re a longtime fan of the band then you know the score. If you’re new to their wild and crazy world then Caustic Casanova plays vast different styles from the Sludge/Stoner Metal underground world. The music is never the same and the band are perhaps more creatively aligned to The Melvins but draw familiar sounds such as Red Fang, KYLESA, Baroness and Torche into their crazy intense world.
Opening song Anubis Rex is a happy-go-lucky song with an almost 90’s Alt Rock and POPPY feel but with a free-flowing Prog Rock attitude allowing the band to play one of the more friendlier songs. There’s plenty riffs here that sees the band have mini extended jams when the later grooves appear. The dual vocals of Stefanie and Francis are superb with fantastic lyrics and spiky vocals working fantastically well with the heavy melodic sounds the band play for this song.
Second song Lodestar is a more fast-paced Punk/Sludge song with distorted ambient and glitchy noises perhaps having the first standout EXPERIMENTAL moment of the album that has a slight The Melvins vibe. Subtle hints of Psych Rock and Post-Rock appeal when Stefanie’s lush sounding vocals appear before the song changes into a more sinister offering with the downbeat lyrics that could be classed as Occult Rock. The jangly guitars are heavy and bring a more solitary feel for the entire song.
Third song A Bailar Con Cuarentena opens with a Start/Stop Punk approach before moving into Experimental Art Rock/Stoner Rock territory. The instrumental work is excellent yet again with an Alt Rock/Metal creative influence within the lyrics and musical beats the band play here. Add Jazzy Psychedelic and Funk based grooves to this song and Caustic Casanova only become crazier and more intense with their different strands of Hard Rock that appears here.
Shrouded Coconut offers almost 10 minutes of intense Experimental Sludge/Stoner Rock riffage that easily has the best riffs on the album that flirts between Jazz Rock rhythms and Heavy Prog Rock sounds. You can expect moments of Freaky Psychedelics and Warped Electronica glitches towards the later stages of the song where the whole atmosphere becomes more DOOM based.
Bull Moose Against The Sky is perhaps Caustic Casanova’s finest creative moment. As the band have their “Sgt Peppers Lonely Heart Club Band” or “Pet Sounds” moment with this part of the album and that’s down to the many different sounds and genres of rock they’ve employed for this track. I mean that as a compliment. This is a 22 minute Progressive Sludge/Stoner Rock opera that’s quite easy to follow and fall in love with. The song can be scarily loud when it needs to be but also sweet natured as well.
Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is a record that requires multiple listens to fully understand it all. As it’s quite a multi-layered album which I wouldn’t expect anything less from Caustic Casanova. The album has wonderful production values that helps the band get their crazy and hypnotic sounds over the finishing line with first rate results.
This is Caustic Casanova’s best album to date. No question.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Steve Howe.
We first got sucked into the magic that is Caustic Casanova with the release of the trio of Pantheon EP’s which we mentioned in our review for their last badass beast called God How I Envy The Deaf (Released in 2019 and can be read all about right here) and can safely say that it’s no small task to follow ALL of that up. But the quartet from Washington, D.C. managed to do just that with their fifth LP that looks like an EP but sounds like a double LP. Get all that? You will!
There’s a lot to digest in just five tracks on the latest from Caustic Casanova. Is it even an “album”, you say? Well, when every track is an experience and the final two tracks contain the bulk of the hefty almost 45 minutes runtime (“Bull Moose Against The Sky” alone closing the record with an especially hearty 22 minutes of unfiltered CC Rawk) of modern Prog Rawk then you’ll get why that argument feels moot.
A glorious noise starts off these proceedings and, let us tell YOU, there is no song in the CC library so far that has matched the majesty of “Anubis Rex”. The song is as much a celebration as it is a reintroduction as we collectively march towards the new normal with Francis Beringer and Stefanie Zænker triumphantly declaring their intent amidst Andrew Yonki and Jake Kimberley’s flourishing guitar sounds while “Lodestar” is a nasty sounding ditty offset by Zænker and Beringer’s heavenly delivery in the vocal department as their respective drum and bass playing practically bounce off each other as Kimberley and Yonki roll out the riffage.
“A Bailar Con Cuarentena” is a swirly Rawk spectacular that really sees the band lean into some more Prog elements especially with the way the guitars interact and intersect with “Shrouded Coconut” coming in next with a grand rollickin’ jam that’s the penultimate punch bringing a focused instrumental fury for the first half and a whimsical way out trip during the latter end. Glass Enclosed… culminates with the aforementioned massive moodpiece called “Bull Moose Against The Sky” that comes together like Sonic Youth doing Desert Rawk for a low end heavy grimy and gritty magnum opus that’s a tantalizing tenet and then some. Beringer begins it all with Zænker eventually accompanying for a rousing vocal harmony before a percussive force akin to a drum line comes in with glimmers of glistening strums from Yonki and Kimberley make their way into this burgeoning brute that’s a 20+ minute affair to remember.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Jesse.
Caustic Casanova hail from Washington, DC, and are releasing their 5th album – Glass Enclosed Nerve Center! The band is progressive, but with some post-punk / 90s alternative influences to go with their King Crimson influence. Described as “Stoned Psych Sludge”. The album features 5 varied tracks, a few which are pretty trippy and ‘out there’, with some interesting titles, starting off rockin’ with “Anusbis Rex”, followed by the single “Lodestar”, and ending in the 22+ minute “Bull Moose Against The Sky”. Colorful cover-art by Scott Partridge.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by KJ.
There are many times when listening to a new album where you have a strong idea of what to expect before pressing play and losing yourself in the record. The only thing to be certain of when listening to CAUSTIC CASANOVA is to expect the unexpected, and new record Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is certainly consistent with that. Their self-described genre agnostic style is filled to the brim with jarringly acute destructive riffs ever-changing to keep you on your toes.
Any thirst for riffs can be quenched from the off with opener Anubis Rex, a track filled with exuberant hope and a youthful energy unrelenting for almost a minute and a half before the vocals enter. This upbeat feel hits a slightly different nerve to the rest of the album, resembled in the end refrain “I thought I was in love before I knew you”. There is occasionally a tone akin to PIXIES in the vocals as they cut through with a sting above the persuasive rhythms from the combination of Francis Beringer and Stefanie Zaenker leading the line. Their voices complement each other well, sitting in a similar range to one another and allowing their song-writing to shine through as they swap from unified powerful hooks to entangling harmonies with ease.
Despite the rapidly-changing and often unpredictable riffs throughout each track, CAUSTIC CASANOVA have a talent for retaining continuity and natural feel during the cacophony of changes. This being the first record to feature second guitarist Jake Kimberley who joined the outfit in 2019, it feels elevated from previous releases. The interplay between Kimberley and longstanding guitarist Andrew Yonki is constructed with precision, even harking to THIN LIZZY in the opener with their directly harmonised melodies, doubling for their dominating riffs to really add impact in contrast. Lead single Lonestar is easily the heaviest track on the album; it’s full of raucous dissonance, and also driven psychedelia from cleverly interweaving vocal harmonies and almost tribal wailings. The main contender for this accolade would be Shrouded Coconut, featuring a monstrous sludgy ending to the call of “the new religion”, and we certainly count ourselves as converts.
Perhaps the grooviest riff on the album goes to A Bailer Con Cuarentena with rampaging guitars, and almost dance-inspired party offbeat drums. The playful rhythms throughout are infectious, almost tongue and cheek at some points with the addition of cowbell and barraging blast beats in the latter half. The guitars will likely take most of the acclaim and rightly so with their tasteful complexities, but the rhythm section truly binds the whole ensemble together, in particular Zaenker on drums. Complex and arresting at best, she often grabs the listener with slight rhythmic variations begging you to be caught off guard while galvanising everything with her tasteful arresting grooves. She grabs the adorned chaos by the scruff of the neck and takes us with it.
If anyone is left in any doubt about their genre-swapping credentials this deep into the album, then look no further than 22-minute epic Bull Moose Against The Sky, which opens with a folk sea shanty-inspired chorus which moves swiftly into a doomy progressive masterpiece. Certainly the most dramatic track on the album personified in Beringer’s vocal performance screaming into the void “who’s side are you on?”, it features perhaps the only moment on the album that could be characterised as gentle. While perhaps songs of such magnitude aren’t to everybody’s taste, you certainly have to respect the ingenuity to tackle such a feat. It shows almost all aspects of CAUSTIC CASANOVA’s extensive range, but we still wouldn’t doubt that they may find even more sounds than are on display here.
Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is unrelenting, rarely taking a moment to breathe from its distorted theme and absorbing rhythms. The constant hits of energy are something to behold, grasping you and leaving you eager for the next hit of calculated revolution. Their masterful approach to each instrument and nuanced arrangements could easily become self-indulgent to lesser songwriters. This quartet however fearlessly take each song wherever it needs to go regardless of how many corners it takes to get there.
Taken from a review of “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Ed Truby.
Caustic Casanova bassist/vocalist Francis Beringer below cites the lyrics to the band’s new single, “A Bailar Con Cuarentena,” as perhaps his favorite ever, which even considering the rest of their upcoming LP, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center (out Oct. 7 on Magnetic Eye Records, set to stream here in full on Oct. 5) never mind their four prior albums and sundry other releases, is saying something. But yeah, it’s understandable. The band isn’t through the first verse before they’ve introduced the AutoZone Messiah and made fun of his mullet with bonus wordplay in substituting “piety” for “party,” toyed with language in multiple languages and established the setting for the song in the age of the titular pandemic quarantine.
Oh but there’s more. Consider the phonetic chicanery between “Logorrhea” and “lager,” a French pronunciation for “timbre” tossed in for good measure to make it work with “amber,” or the similar rhyme-plus pairing of “Appalachianese” and “ideology.” The gleefully weird, mundane-as-unfamiliar portrayed in the lines, “Another incantation from the half-mad cocatrice/Peaceful defenestration from the rock band name police,” and “defenestration” for “demonstration” there. The classic post-hardcore word swap of “seat”/”screen” codifying the awaiting if word and signal earlier. The sheer encapsulation of the era in “This news is big if true.” Shit that’s efficient. And the air of threat in the final part, where we meet and speak with the rattlesnake. Favorite or not, the attention to detail and composition in “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” is deeply, deeply admirable.
And the video is so perfectly odd. Animated by Jase Harper, with birds a plenty and some only-suitable headbanging, we see Beringer, drummer/vocalist Stefanie Zaenker and guitarist Jake Kimberley playing as a trio while remotely-located guitarist Andrew Yonki looks down as an angry sun. Heads are flowers, times are a tough and riffs are mighty. No, I’m not sick of telling you how good this record is. If I have any credibility at all after running this site for the last 13-plus years of my wretched life, please believe me when I tell you Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is something special from this band and not to be missed.
I had bothered Beringer a while back for the lyric sheet to go with the album, and seeing his note below, asked for permission to post the words to the song with the video. You’ll find them below, and so far as I know this is the first time they’ve been made public.
Taken from a review of the music video for “A Bailar Con Cuarentena” by JJ Koczan.
Chesapeake progressive noise rockers Caustic Casanova will launch a tour on Sept. 10 headed out west to Monolith on the Mesa — kudos to the Taos, New Mexico-based festival for understanding what to-date mostly Maryland Doom Fest has known and a whole bunch of others are going to find out shortly — and as they continue to herald the upcoming Oct. 7 release of their new album, Glass Enclosed Nerve Center on Magnetic Eye Records, a second single from the record emerges in the form of “Anubis Rex.” The opener follows behind “Lodestar” and brings post-hardcore vibes front and center as well as a whole bunch of ‘firsts’ for the band as bassist/vocalist Francis Beringer notes in the comment below. You can hear that Thin Lizzy for sure, along with some ’00s emo, the pedal steel and a lot, a lot, a lot of shove. It’s a mover, it’s about love, and it’s gonna be stuck in your head for the rest of the day. If you’re lucky.
I’m slated to review and stream Glass Enclosed Nerve Center on Oct. 5, but before we get there I’ll tell you happily I can’t put the record down, and I can think of only one other album so far in 2022 that’s had such an effect on my passive and active listening habits, and as I start to think about album-of-the-year-type conversations, that weighs heavily. Glass Enclosed Nerve Center is a strong contender in that regard for me — it also runs away with the best song I’ve heard this year in the 22-minute finale “Bull Moose Against the Sky” — so if you haven’t gotten hyped up on it yet, “Anubis Rex” represents it well as the leadoff.
And pretty much I’m making this post to say exactly that.
Taken from a Monolith on the Mesa and Glass Enclosed Nerve Center preview by JJ Koczan.
Un primer avance como “Lodestar” (ver aquí) me llamó muchísimo la atención para ser mi primera toma de contacto con esta banda, a pesar de ver como ha pasado (al igual que tantas) por el radar de “La Habitación 235”. Sí, no podemos dar cabida a todas y muchas suelen pasar de largo. Un fallo muy común entre muchos de mis colegas de sector que tarde o temprano hay que enmendar.
Volviendo al principio, ese mencionado single marcaba una propuesta atractiva de la banda, con un sonido que rápidamente atrae bajo un tímido coqueteo progresivo. Con el segundo avance me dispongo a ponerme manos a la obra con el combo de Washington y meternos en faena con lo que será “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center”, el nuevo trabajo de Caustic Casanova.
Como tantos lanzamientos que nos espera el mes que viene, Octubre empieza a superpoblarse desde este aspecto como buena costumbre en los últimos años. El quinto de álbum de los norteamericanos tiene su fecha fijada para el próximo 7 de Octubre, y nosotros hoy nos abrimos con todo lujo de detalles presentando el segundo single del mismo bajo el avance “Anubis Rex”.
Vertientes poderosas bajo la señal más pesada y progresiva, es el buque insignia de estos eternos excursionistas de dar una vuelta de tuerca al género para que un género más que redescubierto en sus muchas facetas, siga teniendo signos de seguir sorprendiendo. Esto es exactamente Caustic Casanova, y este es su espectáculo.
El nuevo “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” llegará bajo el mandato de Magnetic Eye Records y tiene sus reservas disponibles aquí.
Taken from a Spanish language preview of the two singles from “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Ruben Herrera.
You can usually tell a lot about a band’s sound and musical influences by what they listened to on the radio when they were younger.
But not always.
“I didn’t really grow up listening to music at all, and my parents didn’t really listen to music — ever,” said Francis Beringer, who plays bass and sings with D.C. based Caustic Casanova. “They only listened to WTOP.”
“What do you mean you didn’t listen to music,” I asked incredulously.
“We really didn’t listen to music in our house, we just didn’t — we listened to the news, constantly, as a family,” said Beringer. “It’s funny that someone who grew up to be a musician would have had such a music-less childhood.”
So, maybe it’s not surprising that Caustic Casanova’s upcoming album is called “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center,” the nickname WTOP’s longtime boss, Jim Farley, bestowed upon the newsroom in the early 2000s.
When we read on Twitter that a D.C.-area band was set to release an album named for the #GENC, we had to invite them in to learn more.
Thursday morning, Francis, drummer and singer Stefanie Zaenker, and new guitarist Jake Kimberley stopped by for a tour of the newsroom. Guitarist Andrew Yonki wasn’t able to make it.
With a first stop at the coffee machine, we got the go-ahead from morning show producer Teddy Gelman to drop in on Joan Jones and Bruce Alan.
With its years of experience in recording studios, Caustic Casanova knew to observe the ‘On Air’ light, which comes on when an anchor turns on a microphone in a studio.
What’s still not clear is why the band would want to name its new album after a news station whose former promotional liner included the phrase, “Your favorite radio station doesn’t play songs?”
What was it about the phrase “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center?”
“Ever since I was a little kid, I loved that string of words together, even devoid of its meaning,” said Beringer. “I just thought it sounded awesome, and always had this idea that someday I wanted to have an album called ‘Glass Enclosed Nerve Center.’”
“You didn’t have many friends in school, did you?” I asked. He and his bandmates laughed.
Why would a progressive rock band name its album for an all-news radio station? (WTOP/Michelle Goldchain)
Zaenker grew up in Charlottesville, and went to William & Mary with Beringer. Kimberley was raised in Pennsylvania.
Zaenker and Kimberley liked Beringer’s idea for the album title.
“I think it sounds very mysterious, ‘Glass Enclosed Nerve Center,’” said Zaenker. “What’s in there — I want to go on a mission to figure it out, so that’s why I think it sounds super cool.”
Beringer describes the band’s music as “heavy, progressive rock,” while its Bandcamp page includes a range from “sardonic noise rock to proggy sludge” and “a kaleidoscope of progressive heavy rock exuberance.”
“Lodestar,” the first single from their upcoming album, which will be released Oct. 7, on Magnetic Eye Records, is their first recording with Kimberley.
From an article about Caustic Casanova’s new album “Glass Enclosed Nerve Center” by Neal Augenstein.
Sludge/Stoner Metal Experimentalists Caustic Casanova will return with their 5th album Glass Enclosed Nerve Center on October 7th 2022 and the band have just released their first single – Lodestar.
The track is quintessential Caustic Casanova with its freaky use of Psychedelic Beats, Sludge Grooves and Stoner Metal menace. Perhaps moving away from the Prog Riffs heard on the last album and embracing a more straight up Hard Rock philosophy. The guitars are razor sharp with the band moving between Spaced Out Interludes that merge into areas of Grunge and upbeat Gloomy madness.
The vocals from Stefanie and Francis have a wonderful interplay between them before joining up for some striking singalong vocal passages. The music moves between KYLESA fast paced sounds before adding that eerie Prog Rock weirdness that the band are well known for.
Caustic Casanova brings a more distorted feeling and flow to the song that gives the track a heavier presence that could be classed as Drone Rock/Metal in places.
Lodestar is a wonderful track and shows Caustic Casanova doing what they do best and that is being one of the most inventive and original bands within the underground scene. On this evidence, their new album might be their heaviest and strongest work to date. Roll on October 7th.
Taken from a review of “Lodestar” by Steve Howe.
You could sit down five times to try to describe Caustic Casanova‘s sound and come up with five completely different takes. And that’s why it’s fun. Unpredictable in their post-grunge, noise-rock-informed, heavy indie individualism, the now-four-piece will issue Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, their new full-length, on Oct. 7 through Magnetic Eye Records. It’s their second album for the label behind 2019’s God How I Envy the Deaf (review here) and though it’s been done since last November, with full schedules, pressing and shipping delays and whatnot, 11 months from one end to the other (plus studio time) might just be how long it takes to make a record now. I’d call it a brave new world, but it’s really more like Soylent Green.
Alas, new Caustic Casanova will invariably help. They’re streaming the track “Lodestar” now and you can hear that below, and even in its three-minute span you can hear why Caustic Casanova are the square peg in the round hole of genre classification. There is supposed to be a video coming out as well, I think today, so when and if that happens I’ll add that here [EDIT: It’s down there now.]. But in the meantime, the album cover and particulars are below, as yoinked from Bandcamp. Also of note, they’ll be at Monolith of the Mesa in September.
Taken from an article about the new single “Lodestar” by JJ Koczan.
Since 2018, members of the hard rock band Caustic Casanova have one by one taken roost amongst the shadows of Frederick’s clustered spires and have swooped down like a squadron of rabid, rockin’ and rolling bats making their mark on the city’s local music scene and far beyond.
The band has been relentlessly trucking their original blend of what are at times epic heavy rock/metal/punk songs around the nation. Their inspired efforts, combined with an artful creativity in songcraft and kickass live shows, have garnered the band well deserved attention.
So listen on up, then go rock on out.
Starting at the College of William & Mary in Virginia in 2005, Caustic Casanova have left a trail of band members and broken equipment strewn across the country while enduring the woes of relentless rock touring and life in general, all on their way to finding Frederick as their home base.
The band has been releasing music and seriously touring since 2008 — and clearly spending some time honing their craft over the years. Between 2013 and 2018, Caustic Casanova released a trio of EPs for their Pantheon series, where the band paired original material with classics by bands Pentagram, the Melvins and Weedeater (check out the song “Glossolalia” from Pantheon Vol. 1 for a burner).
The band then signed with Magnetic Eye Records, who in October 2019 released Caustic Casanova’s acclaimed latest record, “God How I Envy The Deaf.” The release garnered two Wammie awards in 2020, one for Best Hard Rock Album and Best Hard Rock Song for “Filth Castle” (which does totally rock).
How is that for bona fides? City of Frederick, represent.
Caustic Casanova features Stefanie Zaenker (drums, vocals), Francis Beringer (bass, vocals), Andrew Yonki (guitar) and Jake Kimberley (guitar). The band first discovered Frederick while living in Virginia and playing shows at the now defunct Guido’s Speakeasy (Frederick’s former dive bar that hosted live, original music) around 2013. In 2017, guitarist Yonki moved to the city, followed by Zaenker and Beringer. Kimberly moved to Frederick in 2018 for work. While already involved in the local music scene, he was not in the band at that time.
“Francis and I decided we wanted to trade in D.C. for something smaller and decided to give Frederick a shot,” Zaenker said. “The historical nature of beautiful downtown Frederick, and its great food, drink and heavy music scene, all had to do with our move. We love it here.”
The band had seen Kimberly play with his former bands and they immediately thought of him first when they decided it was time to add a second guitar player. Kimberly’s talent and creativity appear to have made him a valuable asset to the band, where he seems like a natural fit live, completely shredding on guitar right along with what was already a very tight rhythm section.
While technically Caustic Casanova is a four-piece, and they try to play as many four-piece shows as possible, lately they have been touring and playing most of their live shows minus guitarist Andrew Yonki, who now lives in Upstate New York.
After ending 2021 with a beefy tour schedule in November and December (across what looked like nearly half the U.S.), Caustic Casanova took the holidays off and are now getting back to rehearsals and writing music.
The summer of 2022 will see the release of the band’s latest album out on Magnetic Eye Records and will feature some of Caustic Casanova’s most ambitious material to date — including a 22-minute song on side B — and will be the first full length recording featuring all four members. It also features some new instrumentation with keyboards and pedal steel on a few songs that the band is excited about.
Until then, the band plans to write new music, film music videos, and do some touring in the late spring and early summer. Caustic Casanova have also been confirmed for the Maryland Doom Fest at Cafe 611 in June.
The band’s unique sound comes from a shared — and intense — love of heavy music, while the individual band members also have eclectic tastes and different musical backgrounds.
“Ride in our tour van with us, and you’ll hear Swans, Radiohead, The Obsessed, AC/DC, Aphex Twin, Husker Du, Isis, Lee Morgan, Jesus Lizard, Jawbox, Loretta Lynn and Clutch all in the same day,” Zaenker said. “I started my musical journey as a marching percussion and jazz trumpet player in the middle school band,” she went on. “Jake and Andrew both picked up the guitar early and were in rock bands throughout their teenage years. Francis was inspired to pick up the bass in his late teens after hearing Rush for the first time.”
Zaenker says the band writes their songs organically and don’t ever set out to write a certain type of song. The result is something that always ends up being weird and unconventional.
“If it sounds good to us, we’re going with it,” she said.
Taken from an article by Andy Stout.
Other highlights unarguably include Domkraft bringing a Richard Hawley-cum-BC Camplight feel to ‘Night Prowler’, and the fresh, pub-punk delivery of Caustic Casanova on ‘Dog Eat Dog’. But what’s most remarkable about the compilation is the fact almost every track on here has anthem potential, yet the vast majority are among the lesser-known, or at least less jukebox-ed, of AC/DC’s repertoire.
Taken from a review of The Best of AC/DC Redux in “The Best New Albums This Week.”