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Loincloth | ‘Psalm of the Morbid Whore’


Time is something of a nebulous, and worrying, concept.

How often have you thought about a moment that you treasure, only to then realise that it was quite some time ago?

But, when reliving the memory, it often seems like it was only a month or two ago. This can often create a moment of wistful purposelessness in a person, as they ask “where did the time go?”

I had such a moment when I was sent this album for review.

Their previous LP, ‘Iron Balls of Steel’, is a great record with mood, texture, atmosphere and riffs aplenty.

It stands up as a somewhat underappreciated listen. Indeed, I originally described it in the following terms: “… for an instrumental album, there’s none of the traditional widdly wee bits that take up three days of your life.

Each number is structured, concise and to the point (the longest song is nearly five minutes. Others are two minutes.) without sacrificing the most crucial element to metal: the riff.”

When retrieving that quote, I realised it was from January 2012.

Nearly six years ago. Christ on a bike.

So reviewing this new one, while still in that mindset, is a challenge.

Hard Hitting

Pitched as their final album (due to drummer Steve Shelton’s commitments to Confessor), ‘Psalm of the Morbid Whore’ follows the template laid down by ‘Iron Balls of Steel’: short, compact instrumentals which never leave the listener wishing there was a vocalist in place.

‘Necro Fucking Satanae’ is a hard hitting opener with a touch of groove to it. It has (probably) around seven to eight different riffs going on that gel together. Not a million miles away from the likes of Voivod.

‘Poroths’ begins with around ten seconds of feedback before giving us an almighty chugger of a riff. I love the interplay between the guitar and bass on this one, as they both draw themselves to the listener’s attention without ever sounding like they’re fighting for prominence in the mix.

This, alongside the little flourish on guitar towards the end, makes the whole thing sound expansive while also quite compact at the same time.

‘Morbid Whore’ is a doomier one.

What sounds like drone from an organ gives way to a slowburner which bears a little passing resemblance to ‘Vote With a Bullet’ by Corrosion of Conformity. This song has atmosphere a plenty, with some tight drumming to punctuate the tension.

‘Sigil Ov Five Horns’ carries on the ‘Blind’ era C.O.C influence especially with the breaks and guitar fills. No bad thing, if you ask me.

Closing with ‘Ibex (To Burn in Hell is to Refine)’, the mode is set to ‘epic closer.’ Hence the four note sustained riffs that are heard in between the plummeting.

As the track progresses, the melodies become more prominent (indicating a kind of ‘end of days’ feel) before giving way to two minutes of ambient noises and paper crumbling in fire.

I love the fact that there’s no fucking around on here, musically speaking (the titles might be a little different). The songs are lean, crisp and headbanger friendly. They’re also dark enough to soundtrack the journey to and from work for the next few months.

Time may be a nebulous concept, but it can’t dim the fact that Loincloth will be greatly missed.

4 / 5 -Christopher Owens ::: 23/10/17


One Comment
  1. Loved ‘Iron Balls of Steel’ great record. Going by the track above I’ll likely give this a go. Shame it’s their final album.

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