1997 Wire Magazine Review Foetus: York

Foetus Symphony Orchestra with Lydia Lunch
York (First Exit To Brooklyn)

Concept album alert: Thirlwell and Lunch turn their attention to the Farragut Housing Projects underneith the Brooklyn Bridge [1] and have a good old wallow in other people’s misery. [Actually, Lunch used to live there, and Thirlwell still does – Ed] [2] Musically, the five lengthy pieces run from Bernard Hermann-styled melodrama to grinding guitar thrash. Alone, the music veers towards the predictable tedium of self-obsessed artcore; with the addition of Lydia Lunch’s ranting voice (and gutteral contributions from Thirlwell) it becomes as boring as the endless litany of misery it so obviously relishes in describing. Examples: “The smell of sour milk and junkies mingles with the smell of death”; “I keep lacerating myself with memories and the demented visions of some woebegotten messenger of the Lord.” By the end, on “Arschficken” (that’s ‘buttfuck’, in American), Thirlwell has reverted to more familiar Foetus mode as he grunts “Gonna take a trip up the Hershey highway.” The evidence suggests that the highway in question is his very own.

The Wire, Issue # 164 (October 1997), by Tom Ridge.

[1] The Farragut Housing Projects exist near the Manhattan Bridge, not the Brooklyn Bridge.
[2] Neither Lunch nor Thirlwell lived in the Farragut Housing Projects; rather across the street from it.