Written and produced by Steve Lieberman with the exception of three cover tunes by The Who, Chicago, and the Jim Carroll Band, “Terminator V617F” is Steve’s 25th CD release and features 15-tracks of genuine Gangsta Rabbi-styled industrial metal jazz-rock. The project title made of letters and numbers has a meaning that is as equally important as each song. The (JAK2) V617F is a chromosome mutation causing several types of myeloprolifirative leukemias, including Lieberman’s disease (post Polycythemia Vera Myelofibrosis).
Steve Lieberman who played alongside Weezer and opened for the Misfits, Andrew W.K. and the late Dunn and Vito, completed “Terminator V617F” within 2 months after receiving news that his cancer had become terminal. Brooklyn-born Steve has built a successful career off his unorthodox approach within the industrial rock genre largely due to his signature use of distorted bass, guitars and other instruments such as flutes, saxophones, trombones and melodica.
Some albums are a nexus and a microcosm all their own. This is one of them. This collection of obscure, dissonant tunes will still be kicked around speakers fifty years from now. I have no doubt of it. This album won’t fail to animate and invigorate the souls of those who hear it, it’s a virus in the classic Burroughsian sense, but a virus that fortifies and awakens those who are lucky enough to catch it: This music is passion in its rawest and most vitriolic form.
The first time I listened to “Terminator V617F”, frankly, I didn’t like it. The music was too fast and it was devoid of any melody. Steve’s vocals were screamed so fast and unintelligibly, that it turned me off at first. But there was something infectious about the music that kept me coming back for more. Then I started analyzing the lyrics. They cut with such razor sharp poignancy and heartfelt honesty that the music started to make my stomach churn. I finally got it. This music blew away my old punk and metal records. Steve Lieberman presented his emotions in an honest and beautiful way.
Though often sounding like a casual jam, musically Steve is tighter than 95 percent of the hardcore bands around, and the music stands up. This is revolutionary stuff. I mean who else would blend the diversity of horn instrumentation that Steve does, into a fast-paced, grinding rock raucous like “Terminator V617F”. All I know is that I can put this record on in my room and roll around like an idiot, get all sweaty, and shout along, and love every second of it. This record transcends punk, hardcore, metal or any B.S. music label that you can think of.
Steve Lieberman is the epitome of musical individualism. Fighting the desire to conform to the assimilating establishment, this album is more of a tribute to ideals than to pervading mediocrity. Granted this is no easy album to listen to. You will need ears of steel, but at least with Steve there isn’t such thing as a dull moment, and this 15-track compilation does much to cement that fact. It’s like being on a rollercoaster ride, going higher and higher, further and further, where the air becomes so thin you can no longer breathe…from sheer excitement and anticipation!
I won’t bother with breaking down song title as they are self-explanatory once you get the album. Suffice to say that every song is an adrenaline rush of therapeutic emotion. By the end, you will discover that “Terminator V617F” is much more melodic than you thought, and much less insane than you believed.