There’s nothing more satisfying than one random grind track coming on shuffle, straight out of left field. It snaps in with a screech of sound and a barrage of elements that disappear into the ether shortly after. What does one do after baring witness to just one flash of heaven? Play some more. Henceforth, all who skip to “that grind album” are going to slide down onto W for Wormrot or V for Voices because A) This album grinds B) This album innovates C) This album won’t be beaten.
Okay, it might. Not for a very long time, though. Where to start with the pure grind record of the year?
Dirge was fantastic, it deserved all of the acclaim. Nothing on this, though. Not even close. Voices picks up and shakes grind from its foundations and gives it a colossal shake up before smashing it back into place, never to be the same again. The all out grind assault is faster, harder and even more cumbersome than 2011’s opus. Making the most use out of a brazen, gnarled guitar tone and drums tighter and more mechanical than the machines that Wormrot shout about. It’s grind at its most pissed and most precise. Hall of Fame stuff from the Singaporeans. For it to achieve GOAT status it requires more than being able to grind solidly with the best of them. The Napalm Deaths of the world haven’t gotten to where they are without being able to drop a gear and speed off in different directions other than sheer aural misery.
For every satisfying yet obligatory blast drop and beat down, Voices throws out vicious, short jabs of the most deranged post-hardcore that ever did exist. Sliding in to shred the rug from under feet in just the second burst of fire from Wormrot, this jarring combination of raw emotive delivery and guitars that strike discord in the heart shreds. It really shreds, it cuts and it pops up throughout Voices; at what seems like perfect intervals too. Complimenting this in the most destructive of fashions is the blackened tinges that modern grind and death acts love to dip into. The always unsettling blasts of these post and blackened bursts intertwine and give off the same vibe as other unearthly grind acts like Gorguts or Artificial Brain. They’ve perfectly crossed the wires of violence, groove and atmosphere.
With every stroke, scratch and shriek of Voices, Wormrot confirm that there can always be improvements made on so called perfection. Dirge was the freshest and most exciting grind release of it’s time, now that title sits firmly on this one. Right on the crown of the nightmarish face of the one hundred percent appropriate album art. The ferocity of a band who are at odds with the world rarely makes such an sonic impact as this; 2016 should feel blessed that it is the year deemed fit for this release. Everything great about grind and everything that will be great about grind in the future can be found on Voices. It’s not a slave to the grind. It is the grind. Grind.
Wormrot’s Voices is available now through Earache Records and can be purchased through Bandcamp.