Sun 23rd August 2015
Wreck come to us from Germany, with a metallic brand of doom that confounds as well as impresses. The band were kind enough to send us the 12” so this is a rare review not from digital means. Cheers chaps.
The sparse and unusual sound that Wreck builds puts emphasis on variety, the vocals veer from screams and strained inflections to deep grunts, and the music is equally scattershot, playing slow and purposefully one moment, like in opener Coils of Leviathan there are points at which everything stops, only to spring forward again into the doom-like speed they only moments ago abandoned.
This strange approach continues, but it's one that gels, lyrics about mythical creatures, the end of existence and hopelessness are delivered over an even more bleak section towards the end. The style and production reflects that of 90s hardcore, think Dystopia, Man Is The Bastard etc, the buzzy, flat vinyl sound that would sit comfortably in a cardboard box distro at a punk show as it would on the shelves of any doom fan. Hell, they even throw in the opening riff to Sabbath's Electric Funeral for sheer fun at the end of the same track.
Wreck even stray into deathly territory with The Eichmann Cometh, channeling more windswept bands like Weakling or even slow-motion types like Monarch! Or Rammeses, building atmosphere through barely-there quiet sections before ramping to ugly crescendos.
Case in point is the sea-sick motion of Shipwrecked which swells like an ocean that none of us should ever hope to be stuck on. The sheer variety of ideas here shine through, post-metal influences even make their presence known, creeping into view below the resolute hardcore sheen. This is an amazingly interesting release, with no two sections ever sounding the same.
This music has a steady, deadening thud and heartbeat to it. There's no attempt at a cohesive one sound, which is refreshing, as some doom and sludge releases we are sent can stick to one trick. To listen along with Leviathan is to hear a complex story and a group's collective vision play out. One to truly digest along with their frankly incredible LP art, all tentacles, distorted faces and waves higher than houses.