Panic or Embrace: Happy Birthday to Doomsday Student’s A Walk Through Hysteria Park, 10/21/14

Released six years ago today, Doomsday Student’s A Walk Through Hysteria Park opens with what amounts to a car crash. Caught unaware, and with the volume up, it will give you a heart attack.

But I guess that’s the goal. Doomsday Student traffics well in the sudden and the shrill, the combustible moments and the skull-crusher riffs.

When my parents used to warn me of the “evils of heavy metal music” this is what I imagined. Not that this is metal—though it is decidedly, verily, substantially heavy. It’s just the right kinda monster to scare the straights—vile, bilious, weird, savage, wicked, A Walk Through Hysteria Park would’ve fucked up those Satanic Panic puritans. Haha. Take that.

There is a glorious darkness and a serrated edge to everything here. Songs like “Murder in the Kitchen,” “I Piss Sunshine,” and “The Lean” are acidic, beautiful, and rough in the way shark skin is—smooth as swede one direction, sharp as glass the other.

I say “smooth” because you spend enough time with this record and it begins to form a pleasurable, catchy, backwards kind of pop music.

Or you can panic.

That’s your choice—give in to this fantastic gloom thrall or get hysterical. The former is recommended. The latter is expected.
Adam Gnade (10/21/20)