WORMWITCH

Metal Hammer (UK) - - Album Reviews - CH­ERYL CARTER DAVE EVER­LEY

Heaven That Dwells Within PROS­THETIC

Van­cou­ver’s fear­some black/crust unit rage for the ages

Canada’s Wormwitch are only two al­bums in to their ca­reer yet their mu­sic is so as­sured that it be­lies their rel­a­tive youth. Their meld­ing of black metal aes­thet­ics with crust’s d-beat rhythms makes Heaven That Dwells Within a punchy record that starts off strong and only gets bet­ter. Wormwitch’s songs are melodic where it counts – the mas­sive gui­tars of Ver­nal Womb are sub­lime – and de­li­ciously com­bat­ive when needed dur­ing Benighted Blade. In vo­cal­ist Robin Harris the band have a voice that is rife with spite and through­out he rarely pauses for breath, the words com­ing in furious waves and im­mers­ing the mu­sic in hos­til­ity. Mid­night Sun pushes for­ward on churn­ing gui­tars that lead into the calmer wa­ters of Danc­ing In The Ashes be­fore Lord Of Chains de­stroys all in its path with tightly con­trolled rage. ■■■■■■■■■■

FOR FANS OF: The Se­cret, Black Mono­lith,

Rot­ting Christ

the Lord High Chiefs

Of Fuck­ing Up – a band with a su­per­hu­man capacity to snatch de­feat from the jaws of vic­tory. They have the tal­ent, the tunes and a hotline to the gods of rock’n’roll, which they’ve pissed away in a de­mented soap opera of drug-waz­zocked self-sab­o­tage. They have their neg­a­tive side too, but that’s another story.

is their first al­bum in 10 years, and the first to fea­ture the clas­sic Wildhearts line-up since 1997’s un­lis­ten­able It’s also the best thing they’ve made since their ge­nius/bat­shit crazy de­but, back in 1993. Ac­tu­ally, that’s not true. It might be bet­ter.

Hy­per­bole? Nah. Front­man Ginger is up there with the best song­writ­ers these sep­tic isles have ever pro­duced, cram­ming more busting tunes and heart­break­ing melodies into one song that most bands do in an en­tire ca­reer. Proof: open­ing track, which bol­locks in on a city-chomp­ing riff and Ginger’s phlegm-throated Ge­ordie holler, then pro­ceeds to let rip with not one but gold-plated cho­ruses, each one bet­ter than the last. Or: which lo­cates the sweet spot between AC/DC and the Ra­mones only to leave them both in the dust. And there are eight more of these gleam­ing, pro­fane beau­ties, all equally bril­liant.

There’s a death-or-glory ma­nia to it all, which may or may not re­late to Ginger’s re­cent men­tal health strug­gles (he was sec­tioned last year). There’s a dark­ness, too; let’s hope the line on is an ex­er­cise in cathar­sis, be­cause the al­ter­na­tive doesn’t bear think­ing about.

The Wildhearts are a dial-up band in a fi­bre-op­tic broad­band world, and couldn’t be more out-of-step with current trends if it tried. And that’s pre­cisely what makes it so bril­liant. En­joy it while it lasts, be­cause this is too good for them not to fuck it up again. ■■■■■■■■■■

FOR FANS OF: Motör­head, Ra­mones, Car­diacs

the Wildhearts: still liv­ing on the edge

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