NPR logo Viking's Choice: Cretin, 'Ghost Of Teeth And Hair'

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Viking's Choice: Cretin, 'Ghost Of Teeth And Hair'

Cretin. Sean Wix/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Sean Wix/Courtesy of the artist

Cretin.

Sean Wix/Courtesy of the artist

How's this for an opening line? "Gross. They say I ate you in the womb, that Mom had no room." After eight years of other projects, members joining Repulsion on tour, and vocalist/guitarist Marissa Martinez-Hoadley's sex-reassignment process, Cretin has crawled back out of its delightfully gore-obsessed grindcore hole for Stranger and the pit-baiting song "Ghost Of Teeth And Hair."

Cretin makes no apologies for its allegiances to the grind and death-metal fathers of nasty — Carcass, Repulsion and Autopsy — heard here in a ferocious chug-a-lug that hits like a steel-toe boot to the shins. By contrast, new member Elizabeth Schall's (Dreaming Dead) guitar solo is atonally acrobatic, but you can almost hear her grin as Matt Widener blasts the twin-eating-twin track wide open with a bass solo that channels Mike Watt in a spastic mood.

Stranger comes out Dec. 9 on Relapse Records.