Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Beyond B-Town, Vietcong, Album Review.

2035:  A record shop somewhere in Birmingham.
A hipster picks up a copy of a  vynil re-release of Vietcong's fabled 2015 self titled début album.
Hipster: 'Man, I've never heard this album before
Other Hipster: You kidding me dude?
Hipster: I'm into Savages, WU LYF and Eagulls but Vietcong are one the few Post 00's  Post-Post-Punk bands I've not got into.
Other Hipster: You've gotta get that record dude.

That's the creative writing section of the review over. The point is that I really do feel that while now Vietcong are a new, if slowly emerging cult band, In the future they could well become as loved and admired as bands from the past such as Joy Division or Talking Heads are now. Unlike the former Vietcong's Tragedy seems to be behind them, having lost a member of their previous band Women at only 26. The band themselves have already suffered some near-death scrapes on tour themselves. This Début album follows on from the 'Cassette' EP. It's blistering stuff, dense and experimental, yet enjoyable and melodic. Many bands at the moment take inspiration from Post Punk bands such as Joy Division or Gang Of Four, and many bands take inspiration from Krautrock, which produced visionaries such as CAN and Kraftwerk. Yet only Vietcong have managed to pull these influences together, creating something much darker than their peers. There are no 3 minute radio friendly cuts here, the songs are all over 5 minutes long, which allow the band to jam and moments of beauty to emerge from the noise. Strong drum rhythms blare throughout, especially on the militaristic opener. Electronics back up the band on a few of the songs, but only really add to the mood.  The lyrics are dark yet poetic, deliverd by a growling voice, which echoes underneath the layers of instrumentation.
The first set of lyrics from the first song "Writhing violence/essentially without distortion/wired silent/ vanishing into the boredom", should give you an idea of the bands intelligent nihilism, and of how they actually sound like. 
This is an album that requires repeat listens, Songs such as Silhouettes, and Bunker Buster, reveal themselves as stand out tracks the more they're played. Overall 'Vietcong' is not a perfect album, but it possesses a very rare trait in music these days, it is totally unique.

No comments:

Post a Comment