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Glasgow post-punk / noise rock trio VOM have been active since 2009 but haven’t exactly been churning records out. Way back, we scored copies of their split with Gummy Stumps on Winning Sperm Party in 2001 and their excellent ‘Altered States’ LP in 2013. Then they appeared to have fallen off the map. I thought they’d vaporised into obscurity, but now, four years since their previous album, they return to tear shit up good and proper. Sounds like they’ve spent their wee break festering in the Broken Flag School of Rock where they exhumed the rotting corpse of rock ‘n’ roll, eschewing the more gothy leanings of previous work in favour of a more caustic assault, spewed out from the very bowels of hell.
The tape opens with the unsettling, eerie intro ‘Initiation’ before lunging into ‘Ishtar’, propelled by loose drums and a ghoulish, juggernaut bassline, over which searing guitar is smeared across, howling in some lost demonic language, and then locking into a pummelling groove midway, which then appears to collapse and deconstruct. A partially submerged, indecipherable vocal runs over the relentless, nasty neck snapping bassline and convulsive cymbal attack of ‘The Binding’. ‘Abramelin’ continues the free, jam-like construction of these tracks - at this point the bass rumbling threatens to erupt like a volcano, and the guitar sounds like it’s emitted so much energy it’s about to die... and then, back into it they go, finding a second wind and dishing out a brutal sonic assault akin to being attacked and eaten alive by a swarm of starving insects. They momentarily hold back the intensity somewhat on ‘Attrition’, and just when I’m gasping for air, they chuck me in some gloopy black swamp and leave me for dead with the beautifully mournful, soul stirring closer ‘Old Gods’ complete with bonus post-punk primitive drum machine.
The label declare this tape as being ‘absolutely fucking brilliant’. I’m not gonna argue. Highly recommended.
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- Initiation by VOM
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