If there is any glimmer of hope for humanity and the world as its falls further into decay, it is an escape you will not find in the sound and new album of German band Nightslug. The seven track encounter is a crushing swamp of sound and ill-will, a soundtrack for and after the apocalypse which thickly and ravenously consumes any hint of light. It is ugly, increasingly voracious, and viciously suffocating but also irrepressibly compelling.
Formed late 2011 in Düsseldorf, Nightslug was bred in and emerged from the country’s hardcore-punk scene. As their demo 12” that first year and debut album Dismal Fucker in 2012 revealed, the band’s sound immersed that hardcore and punk breeding into a tsunami of sludge seeded hostility and nihilistic expression. Both releases startled and spawned potent attention for themselves and the band, but now their brand new album Loathe takes everything to a new grotesque plateau with, easy to suspect, a similar growth in awareness and success soon following.
From the initial sonic violation of Vile Pigs, band and release is a hellacious resonance in ears and spiteful provocation for the imagination and emotions. The opener swiftly welcomes a savage bassline and telling vocal samples as its climate becomes a piercing and even more inhospitable prospect. Dirty doom spawned riffs add to the trespass almost as instantly as the insidious tones of the vocals, everything united in a corrosive smog of noise and intent. As with many destructive proposals, there is an underlying tempting and swagger leading to contagion, the song’s coming through that increasingly infernal bass bait matched in rancor by riffs and a riveting repetitious essence permeating all aspects.
The song’s departing sonic abuse transforms into the sonically violent start of the album’s title track. It is also the spark to a rage of intensively striding riffs and scything rhythms as a filthy rock ‘n’ roll swing cores the tempest of physical and emotional abuse. The storm though is soon turned into an inferno of noise and indeed loathing through the maelstrom of guitar and the ravenously merciless vocals before it too seeps into its successor, The Thrill Is Gone: Repulsion. There is nothing but hatred and bad blood running through the lumbering vitriol posing as a song, predatory riffs and rhythms alongside contaminated grooves and effect despoiled vocals colluding to get under the skin and devour the listener from within. As much as it is sludge, hardcore, and sheer aural cancer, that deep rooted infection is working away with noise rock and industrial tempting too and never has antipathy and the end of personal days been so seductive.
The excellent Under a Bane is a short unbridled savaging churning up body and feelings with every rancorous note and barbarously spewed syllable whilst Disease straight after, as its name suggests, is a lingering and inescapable sonic and emotional malady slowly working away at the senses with its insatiable distemper. Ears and thoughts simply get lost in its immersive depths and suffocating claws, its sludge crawl clad in an esuriently scarring sound for a gradual and cumulative persuasion.
Animalistic is the best way to describe the brilliant alchemy of Pure, its tribal beats undiluted temptation crawled over by wretchedly bred vocals and a seesaw of sonic enticing. As the gorgeous assault enslaves you can almost feel reality and the surrounding world crumbling into dust, before closing song Tainted Throne drags the listener into its own realm of carnal tones and hideous sonic landscapes lorded over by the most depraved sounds and creative imaginations.
The final song epitomises the nasty and beauteous decay of Loathe, an album it has to be said that simply enthrals and thrills from start to finish. It is obviously not going to ignite a greedy appetite and excitement in everyone but as life and humanity putrefies in our hands, Nightslug present one delicious soundtrack.
Loathe is out now via Lost Pilgrims Records (FR), Dry Cough Records (UK), and Broken Limbs Recordings (USA) and digitally @ http://nightslug.bandcamp.com/