EP Review: Skullflower/White Medal – Split

The Skullflower contribution to this split won’t come as a surprise to anyone familiar with Matthew Bower’s recent output. “Great Hunter” is streams upon streams of noise, shouting down a crackling melody that just barely scrapes the surface of audibility – kind of like someone taking a dirty, bludgeoning axe to The Angelic Process. It’s riddled with the same grimy catharsis as his latest album – Strange Keys to Untune Gods’ Firmament – and makes for equally as relentless and exhausting listening as that LP.

Six minutes of lo-fi black metal puts Skullflower in good company. White Medal’s “On’t Borough” is a grimy relic of a recording – a haunting remnant of some monolithic Satanic symphony, with black spurts of guitar and guttural screams, torn to pieces and buried beneath a repulsively weathered mess. Vague implications of drum crashes give the whole piece its own twisted sense of rhythm and tempo, locked into a gruesome march that constantly threatens to collapse into rattling, distorted disarray.

It’s an enjoyable split, but quickly forgettable. To be honest, that’s arguably part of its appeal – it’s a release to be cast aside and rediscovered, otherwise lurking as a harrowed globule of vinyl amongst your music collection. Certainly worth a listen.

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