What a great idea, get two of the most horrific outfits in existence and throw them together, double the horror! In the left corner and standing with their backs to us we have the mysterious Dragged Into Sunlight from various dark corners of the UK. Apart from seeing them looming out the mist live a couple of times recently they have been largely quiet since their earth shattering WidowMaker album back in 2012. In the right corner have Gnaw Their Tongues the work of Mories from France, a person who is never quiet on the release front. Indeed we are still recovering from the recent Abyss Of Longing Throats and the ever busy with various projects howler is close to unleashing a new Cloak Of Altering album too.
There’s a lot of emphasis from the PR blurb here that this idea goes back to 2011 with the main aim being “to capture, digest and regurgitate Godflesh’s 1989 Streetcleaner into a conceptualised nightmare.” You can read into that what you want but be prepared to also cast it aside as if you play things back to back you have two very different albums. There are certainly facets of Godflesh from the industrial clamour found occasionally within N.V. as well as moods and emotions but this is no carbon copy or anything. To add to the authentic feel behind it they did get none other than Justin Broadrick involved in the production so the feel is certainly enmeshed within the framework here and apparently the 30 minutes of anti-music has been honed down from no less than 3 hours of material. As to which work is the nastiest and more virulent well it is hard deciding as both have the necessary grime and spite to make them a hateful listening experience and I doubt DiS and GTT ever intended to outdo the seminal Streetcleaner (an act of pure heresy). They certainly have given it a good shot though and this is an album that you will walk away from wanting to completely cleanse yourself from after hearing.
The tone of drone which is incredibly Godfleshian takes us into ‘Visceral Repulsion’ and we get the first recorded speech of a killer talking about their methods of murder. You can have fun trying to work out who these sinister voices are or just bang heads to the robotic rancour of the metallically clanking music. Vocals come in squealing away, low in the mix but coating the music in a nasty layer of grime as they get ever shriller. Everything then explodes into a horrendous battering blur (surely no drum machine here) and takes on into a headlong panic inducing surge that has elements of both outfits embroiled within its seething cortex. By now you will be lost in the quagmire of sonic devastation or blindly trying to get as far away from it as possible as it moves into a sluggish slow crunching rhythm. It’s not pleasant and strikes as music about serial killers for serial killers! Bruising drums bring flowers of flesh and blood to Absolver and by now the vocals are howling as it speedily ploughs away in a convoluted dervish of destruction. Despite all the abuse from within there is melody, thick and galloping as within the fast paced shredding miasma, equally glorious and harrowing and things really get into a thick and ugly groove before we get an ambient lesson in how to shoot people effectively. If you hadn’t quite somehow managed to pick up on the subject matter yet a track title like ‘Strangled With The Cord’ should have light-bulbs clicking on. Feedback and noise builds over a ghostly female voice sampled and massive slow drum pounds brood away with guitars slithering slimily in as vocals are wretched out sickeningly. The clamour is slow but utterly foul picking up into skewed rhythms and punishing blurs of speed. Attacking like described the contusion tightens and effectively throttles all life out of things, vocals literally gasping away sounding like breath is being shortened and extinguished.
Thing’s don’t get any prettier over the last couple of tracks either and the battering continues with little in the way of mercy. It sounds like both Mories and DiS members are handling the actual vocals here and there is a diverse feel within the styles but they never quite manage to fully penetrate through the rugged and choppy instrumental assault. It’s going to be more than interesting to see the bands collaborate on stage next year and see who is responsible for what, even if it is through a shroud of ice and with the players all standing with their backs to us. Before then it’s back to the dungeon to sharpen the tools with this on for the soundtrack, masking the screams.
(8/10 Pete Woods)