Lavotchkin - Widow Country
Shark City Records
By PuddaWudda UKMU
Screamo; it sends shivers down your spine, right? Not in pleasure, nor even disgust, but close your eyes and put your head in hands overwhelming embarrassment and frustration when you get your entire taste in music (diverse as it is, the subtle differences of grind and grindcore lost on so many…) dismissed with a snigger as ‘screamo, urgh’. It’s up there with unwanted conversations with uncles about Def Leppard and Bon Jovi in terms of misinterpretations of metal. It’s almost wrong to think that yes, screamo is a genre, and if you’ve ever heard the violence in Orchid, Bucket Full Of Teeth or Ampere, or heard it in the works of bloodshot maniacs Converge or Agoraphobic Nosebleed, you know it’s not floppy haired morons who like to further butcher Bring Me The Horizon.
play dark, fast, urgent, frenzied, ripping, tearing hardcore from hell, the likes of which you most probably won’t be tripping over here in the UK, but criminy, they do it well. Fifteen minutes is a cheeky excuse of an album, but crammed into it is an hour’s worth of rage, bursting at the seams with epileptic savagery, so the diet pills haven’t done too much damage to the listening experience. Music conjured from a pit of swirling black liquid and meant to played in basements, Lavotchkin
opt for the negative approach, but the occasional belch of haphazard ‘happy’ comes bubbling to the surface helping to break up the assault; otherwise back to back tracks ‘The Pledge/Very Bad Things’
and ‘It’s A Good Day For A Wake’
, too similar in key to swat away the sensation of de ja vu, would be hard to forgive. As it were, the interspersed visits to fellow homegrown talent The Plight and The Ghost Of A Thousand territory do well to split up the nervous breakdown, erm, breakdowns and mangled, jangled guitars. It all culminates in closing title track ‘Widow Country’
which ties together all the loose ends with terrific results.
A longer album would demand greater diversity, and a lot more homemade material rather than harvesting their influences’, and the vocals peppered with white noise are indistinguishable from anyone else’s, but as an example of a band doing a specific type of music, and doing it fucking well, it’s a crucial UK release.
Official Lavotchkin Myspace
Official Shark City Records Website