Vulvagun - The Painful Road To Eden

Vulvagun - The Painful Road To Eden

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(CD, Hellfire Records, 2017)

The fateful “In The Beginning There Was Death” intro on VULVAGUN's second full length “The Painful Road To Eden” sets the mood straight away, and I can't wait to hear what's to come. The band’s first release “Cold Moon Over Babylon” did strike hard and I really loved the bouncy (no, not in that three cool words band type of jump...) beat in the music. It's filled with energy and melodies but still keeping a classic and very heavy sound. What's there not to like?

The reason for picking up VULVAGUN in the first place was simple; the band comes from Australia. Normally, bands from down under have a unique and very interesting touch in their music, and VULVAGUN definitely belongs to that bunch. And when the album starts for real, there's no doubt that the band yet again has created a mighty fine piece of music. “The Stinking Low Tide” is a fast and moody piece, the harmonies are fantastic and touches upon US Metal acts as VICIOUS RUMORS, speed, technique and melody combined.

One of the songs that got stuck first from “The Painful Road To Eden” was “Leeches”; the chorus-line of course but also the up-tempo beat and all the elements that got me hooked in the first place. Also, the title track was one of the first to settle, the intro riff is fantastic and the punch in the double bass drum although it is a mid-tempo song is amazing. In passages like that, one double bass-drum makes it happy and cheesy but not here; the mix in intensity with the mellow verse and then back to the initial riff introduced in the song-intro. It works perfectly with a floating vocal line over the hard and heavy riff. It's similar to what NEVERMORE did during their glory days without sounding directly like them. Also, the tone in Wayne Dwyer's voice works perfectly here; it is squeaky enough to create a desperation and melancholy that's just fabulous. Yeah, this is one of my favorites from “The Painful Road To Eden”. Easier going “Of Gods And Monsters” goes down really well also, there's this little twist in the harmonies in the verse that sometimes just feels very annoying to just be, at the next spin the coolest thing on the record. This combined with a very catchy chorus-line makes the song memorable and I would love to hear this one live.

Heavy and groovy “...Said The Spider To The Fly” stands out but wasn't my favorite from start, it is a little more complex and harder to take in. It feels more technical and modern when compared to the rest with the open chords / riffing behind the vocals, at least partly and I'm not very fond of that. But once it settles, it works and the rest of the song is very good, it's just that riff I don't like. It's a bit contradictive though as “Old Creeping Jesus” also has a similar character but that one I love. Sometimes it's hard to say why things work and don’t and I don't have a good explanation for this... I love the dark and gloomy feel in the whole song. And that's the nerve that goes straight through “The Painful Road To Eden”, the songs are catchy and there's a lot of melody but it's a bloody Heavy album. Musically, VULVAGUN stands out from most other bands, it's standard music when trying to describe it but they do sound special. I kind of like the muddy production but perhaps they could have gained some with a bit more modern old school guitar sound. Also, the record clocks in on 64 minutes. It's a good +hour of music but a lot to take in. Small things to point out but it's things like this that can break it also. Instead of the feeling; wow, is it over already! Which actually is how I feel now after a bunch of spins, so let's just leave it with that VULVAGUN released yet another great album.

8/10


Links:

www.Vulvagun.Com
www.MySpace.Com/Vulvagun
www.FaceBook.Com/Vulvagun


Tracklist:

01. In The Beginning There Was Death
02. The Stinking Low Tide
03. Spirit Of The Beehive
04. Leeches
05. The Painful Road To Eden
06. Instant Hate Response
07. Heart Of The Sea
08. Of Gods And Monsters
09. Prelude To An Earthquake
10. ...Said The Spider To The Fly
11. Mass Coronal Ejection
12. Old Creeping Jesus
13. There Are Worse Things Waiting


Lineup:

Wayne Dwyer - Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
George Larin - Guitar
Evan Harris - Bass
Chris Phillips - Drums