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The first three albums in GRIDFAILURE’s five-album Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery concept series – Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery I, II, and III – embody current unraveling of society: murder, outbreak, dystopian governments, warfare, depletion of resources, and survival by any means necessary. The final two albums in the series – Teeth Collection and Drought Stick – prophesize the next phase of society with a further atavistic style. The second installment in this dark arc delivers an expansive dose of pulsating wrath which shows GRIDFAILURE’s harsh dirge diving into further depths of the ongoing apocalypse in which we’re currently living, as humankind consumes itself and the entire planet and nature’s wrath becomes more apparent by the day.
Marauding factions, societal collapse, revenge, organ harvesting, nuclear warfare, widespread contagion, unfathomable storms, cannibalism, and other grim topics poetically permeate this intense album which fully envisions the extreme, anti-genre, experimental vision more than any prior release from GRIDFAILURE to date. Its fifteen movements consume a mammoth hour-and-fourteen minutes.
Containing material spanning GRIDFAILURE’s entire four-year lifespan, Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery II infuses many styles of analog and digital percussion, acoustic and electric guitars, bass, ukulele, many types of keys and synth, accordion, trumpet, theremin, powerelectronics, harmonica, didgeridoo, field recordings, and more, some of which were recorded outdoors including in extreme weather events. The outfit’s hostile soloist David Brenner created the entire album, performed multiple instruments on all tracks including some fully solo. Yet as with many GRIDFAILURE albums, a wide array of guest contributors and collaborators offer their talented and varied arts to the album’s diverse flow. The album features musicians from the outfit’s New York City home region, and many others from California, Pennsylvania, Florida, Texas, Colorado, Indiana, Arkansas, and China, including contributions from GRIDFAILURE’s primary live members – Benjamin Levitt (Megalophobe), Greg Meisenberg (Maid Myriad, A Fucking Elephant), and Richard Muller (The Third Kind, Vise Massacre, Great Planes) – as well as Mac Gollehon (David Bowie, Miles Davis, Onyx, Madonna, Blondie), Liz Ciavarella-Brenner, Faith Ciavarella, Pete Tsakiris, Leila Abdul-Rauf (Vastum, Fyrhtu), Nathan Verrill (Fyrhtu, Cardinal Wyrm), No One (T.O.M.B., Dreadlords), Clayton Batholomew (Mountaineer, ex-Secrets Of The Sky), Dave Small (Cutworm), Christian Molenaar (Those Darn Gnomes), Lane Oliver (Feel Happiness, Yatsu), Christopher Henry (Fuck Your Birthday, Humans Etcetera), Jeff Wilson (Chrome Waves), Matt Bacon, Andrew Hess, and Chuck Schaaf (Deadbird, ex-Rwake) and his family Star, Izzie, and Mason Schaaf.
Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery II was performed/arranged, recorded, and mixed by David Brenner at The Compound in Valley Cottage, New York, who also drew the cover art, after which it was mastered by Dan Emery at Black Matter Mastering in Nashville, Tennessee (Kool Keith, Benjamin Tod, Krieg, Thetan).
“GRIDFAILURE makes music that is as harsh and unsettling as it is hypnotic so it is quite apt that their dystopian noise has yielded their crushing, latest album Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery II on Nefarious Industries during these uncertain and unprecedented times.” - Echoes and Dust
"...I can say with confidence that GRIDFAILURE is a very peculiar and original project with its own stylistic direction and approach to sound." - Musique Machine
"It really is that dark and unnerving and coated in the type of misanthropy that makes you ashamed to be a human being. Skulduggery II is not a dystopian album; it’s a prophecy. This is a work of art that transcends music and dares to peer into the abyss." - Scream Blast Repeat
"Mass extinction, dystopian government and the downfall of humanity are no longer abstract ideas of a distant future...they are staring us right in the face like hungry wolves. They are as real as the air we breathe. Right now there’s no better time for a project like GRIDFAILURE, the one man industrial noise/drone machine headed up by PR whiz Dave Brenner. GRIDFAILURE has had an unbelievably prolific career, participating in more splits and Eps than you can shake a human femur bone at. But with Sixth Mass Extinction-Skulduggery II, Brenner has pulled out all the stops and created the most massive ode to miserable, end-times sound yet." - Dr. Abner Mality, Wormwood Chronicles
"...a hushed and terrifying unsettled arrangement of off kilter tones, screams, tools, and thought patterns that you just know are going to end in the worst possible manner. […] If Rapoon was more pissed off and Merzbow had more control, this is where GRIDFAILURE firmly sits." - The Doorway To
"This is a record with a lot of free space, but in these long moments there’s nowhere to relax; instead, these are long periods of tension, hammering home the aesthetic, relentless." - Discovered Magazine
"Red Tide Baptism sounds positively mellow and understated compared to follow-up track Farmer Suicide, with the type of vocals that make your average black metal band sound like Lady Gaga…" - The Sleeping Shaman
"It’s very eclectic and diverse, defying genre descriptions with the use of traditional instruments along with more unusual ones such as accordion, theremin and didgeridoo in addition to field recordings. Ambient soundscapes are sometimes peaceful, other times filled with tension and chaos. Vocals are buried deep in the mix. Atmosphere and emotion drive the avant-garde and experimental compositions, with numerous guest appearances from members of bands such as Vastum, Chrome Waves, T.O.M.B., Deadbird and more." - Heavy Music Headquarters
"Ever the apocalypse-renderer, dark ambient and harsh noise artist GRIDFAILURE seeks to illustrate through shouting, scraping, blistering and boiling collages the intensifying brutality between men as increasingly barren, nutrient-void fruits of the Earth dry up beneath their feet. With this second part of a five album conceptual undertaking there is a sense of drying, of those chasing down increasingly toxic pools of water that lose there potability with each passing week." - Grizzly Butts
"...the sonic encapsulation of erratic spurts of physical pain. It’s like the soundtrack to moments after the most raging parts of a crisis have unfolded and surveying the wreckage is essentially all that’s left." - Captured Howls
"Sounds that are this experimental, are extremely hard to pigeonhole into a fixed category. I sat here for a time wondering how to explain what I am hearing; until I decided not to. What I can tell you, is that this work is a collaboration of many parts. A gear in the machine. It was created over four years, and as such, contains segments that vary greatly from one another. Parts are noise. Harsh and cold – difficult to listen to. Others are more drone-like. More in a shoegaze and dark ambient vain. Then there are segments played on guitars. It ends as abruptly as it began, and is an experience in itself." - Modern Free Press
"Another dose of noise-fueled misanthropy from New York... with this new album the powerviolence largely takes a backseat in favour of crawling, serpentine slithers of dystopic noise, all dredged from the nether regions of protagonist Dave Brenner’s fevered mind, ready to be transplanted into the part of your mind reserved only for the most hideous, upsetting visions. […] Such is the skill with which sounds and moods are manipulated, the end result is the soundtrack to each listener’s own private hell. That’s a devil of a trick to pull off, but somehow GRIDFAILURE have managed it here. Hats off." - Sentinel Daily