Friday, 6 February 2015

Torpor - From Nothing Comes Everything (Album Review)


Album Type: Full-Length
Date Released: 9/2/2015
Label: Head of Crom/Black Bow Records

‘From Nothing Comes Everything’ DD/CS/LP track listing:

1). From This Time
2). Surrender to the Light
3). The Wake
4). As Waves Crash
5). Abandon
6). Everything We Left Behind

Torpor is:

Nats Spada | Vocals
Jon Taylor - Guitar/Vocals
Lauren Mason | Bass
Simon Mason | Drums

Review

The Sludgelord’s boggy swamp is home to a plethora of bands founded upon the desire to retch riffs of the dirtiest kind upon our welcoming ears, but few can claim a bottom end as punishing as Torpor’s. The Brighton wrecking crew celebrate their third birthday next month, but the confidence which exudes from out of ‘From Nothing Comes Everything’ could trick you into believing they are three times that age. Fronted by Nats Spada’s banshee screams, they pour elements of sludge metal, hardcore and doom into their bubbling cauldron throughout their multi-faceted sound, giving listeners plenty to find invigorating. These are bleak dirges that satisfy our rumbling hunger for riffs filthier than Ron Jeremy’s hard drive and Spada is their tyrannical Queen, domineering the act from her towering throne.

Their second release,  ‘From Nothing Comes Everything’ takes the blueprint drawn up on 2012’s ‘Bled Dry’ and expands upon the borders of their sound, claiming new territory as their own and remaining completely and utterly devastating in the process. Dissonant riffs snap at you from a post-metal haze throughout, the first tremors of the near 11-minute epic 'From This Time' quite simply taking your ears by siege. Yet, for all the devastation they cause, the post-metal haze that capes the entire record stops it from becoming overbearing, somehow managing to find a dwelling on the spectrum where brutality and lucidity are of equal measure and effect.  

For the most part, Spada spews out low, grinding growls that bathe in cesspit rhythms as slow as rush hour traffic, but occasionally she cuts to cleanly delivered lines which most prominently show off their hardcore side. It’s that extra dynamic which grabs you the most – the juxtaposition from wretched, wallowing warbles to smooth but seething passages sticking out like a proudly sore thumb.

‘Surrender to Light’ packs a dismal, plodding riff with subtle changes oscillating around the riffs domineering presence. Experimentation with the dynamics later on proves this is a band refusing to rest on their laurels; they want to assault your ears in as many different ways as possible. Compare where the band are today with the band they introduced themselves as in 2012 and you will see with your own eyes the steps forward this band has taken.

‘The Wake’ is nightmarish, its atmosphere otherworldly. At just over two minutes the mainly instrumental track stabs a blood stained blade into the gut of this record, ‘As Waves Crush’ the blood that comes flooding out.

Drummer Simon Mason’s cymbal centric playing, sounding like waves crashing in the ocean. Conjuring an atmosphere which this album thrives on, invoking a virgin layer of paint on the canvas, setting the mood for the others to follow with menacing intent.     

Admittedly it can be difficult to differentiate the songs without astute attention being paid. The songs kind of morph into each other which bares both positive and negative results: the sense of cohesion here is immense, the record rapturous for it, but at the same time there’s that craving for a little more to crawl out of the mix and make itself known to you.

A great record that captures this band’s progression, however it leaves you with the feeling that there are still many more studious steps to be taken.

Words: Phil Weller  

You can pick up the DD here and LP here

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