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In the early days of the indie underground, bands used to pool their funds and release split singles, EPs, and even full-length albums almost as a matter of course; it cut the expenses in half and often doubled a baby band's potential audience. By the end of the '90s, when CD pressing costs had dropped dramatically, split releases became much rarer, to the point that only bands with a deep personal or stylistic connection would join forces. This 2003 split CD by the upstate New York grindcore band Kalibas and Ohio noisemongers Rune is an anomaly, in that case. The four songs by Kalibas are straightforward grind, with all of the lightning-fast tempos, strangulated vocals, and pummeling rhythms that implies. The songs are blasts of speed and snarl that do little to advance beyond the style's basic rules. Rune's four lengthy tracks are far more interesting, adding warped electronics, tape-loop trickery, and pure noise interludes to the grindcore base, turning up with something that sounds almost like Captain Beefheart jamming with Mike Patton's art-noise side project Mr. Bungle. This half (two-thirds, actually) of the disc is far more interesting than Kalibas' uninspired riffing.

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