By: Charlie Butler
Album Type: Splits
Date Released: 10/05/2017 |10/04/2017
Labels: Feast of Tentacles |
Halo of Flies
“Disrotted/Molch Split 7”//DD track listing:
1). Disrotted – “Deliquium”
2). Moloch – “Fleshwound”
“Cloud Rat/Moloch Split 12”//DD track listing:
1). Clout Rat – “Sueno”
2). Cloud Rat – “Perdiak”
3). Cloud Rat – “Stench”
4). Cloud Rat – “Baby Sling (Balloon Born)”
5). Cloud Rat – “Biting the Air”
6). Cloud Rat – “Pit”
7). Cloud Rat – “Amber Flush”
8). Moloch – “The Ninth Wave/Bloody North”
9). Moloch – “Lead”
2017 looks set to be an amazing year for Moloch. The Nottingham sludge dealers will be spreading their crushing misery across the US in support of Thou in the summer and are about to unleash a cavalcade of new releases. The first two waves in this attack are a couple of mighty splits; an LP with Michigan grind/punk whirlwind Cloud Rat and a 7” with funereal Chicago doomers Disrotted.
I’ve been hungry for more Moloch since their great 2016 split LP with Lich. The new material on offer across these two new records more than lives up to my expectations and sees the band take their sickening racket to new levels of extremity.
“The Ninth Wave / Bloody North” opens the Moloch side of the Cloud Rat split with twelve minutes of unrelenting terror. It begins with lumbering stop/start riffs and harrowing howls that establish a mood of all-encompassing dread from the very first second. The track degenerates further into a bottomless pit of despair, like a mix of Eyehategod and early Swans filtered through a grimy noise rock lens. Just when you think this treacly crawl could not get any more unpleasant, the track drops down to a lone dirty bass and screeching feedback which acts a backdrop for a harrowing sample of indecipherable barked threats and desperate tears. It’s unlikely you will hear a more distressing and powerful track this year.
“Lead” offers some relative respite from this onslaught but still consists of repetitive bludgeoning riffs. It sees Moloch expanding their sonic horizons to take in some unhinged lead guitar squalls and more expansive sounds that bring a hint of black metal to the pounding finale.
The band’s contribution to the split 7” with Disrotted is the most direct of these new tracks. Relatively perky by Moloch’s standards, it’s a hard-riffing no-nonsense sludge assault but still mired in a swamp of feedback and filth.
Moloch’s offerings on these splits see them raise their already impressive game, making them the ones to beat when it comes to ugly, messy, noise-riddled doom. My ears and soul should have recovered from the carnage inflicted by these new songs just in time to enjoy their imminent new LP.
The best part of split releases is getting introduced to killer new bands and Moloch have teamed up with first class partners here. Disrotted contribute seven minutes of slow motion punishment to their split 7”. The band’s brand of Burning Witch-style torment is a good foil for Moloch’s more aggressive approach, unleashing molasses-thick waves of doom that wash over the listener to create a dense, hypnotic wall of sound. Once you’ve entered the dark cloud of Disrotted’s aural domain, it’s hard to pull yourself free.
Cloud Rat’s ever-shifting blend of high octane grind, crust and hardcore punk is completely captivating and a brilliant contrast to Moloch’s drudgery. “Sueno” kicks things off with a pummelling intro riff that blurs into chaotic screamo mayhem while “Baby Sling / Balloon Born” introduces some spidery, discordant guitar lines that shift into furious d-beat sections that recall the fury of the much-missed Hammers. Every track here is loaded with twists and turns that strike the right balance between complexity and no-nonsense rock fury that results in an addictive blast of cathartic fury. The hints of keyboards throughout these tracks culminate in the glorious curveball of closing track “Amber Fury”. A brooding piece of post-punk synthcore it sounds like Cold Cave being played through a broken radio. The fuzzy lo-fi production only adds to its haunting quality. Somehow this complete change of sound sits perfectly beside the chaos that precedes it and within the split LP as a whole. It demonstrates that Cloud Rat are an amazing band who could turn their hand to pretty much any genre and produce gold.
Overall, these two splits are both essential purchases that showcase three incredible underground bands. Buy now.