Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Album Review: Viet Cong - Viet Cong

On their first full-length LP, Viet Cong effectively fuses modern post-punk with new and inventive sounds. Utilizing airy guitars and synthesizers, instruments that normally have no place in this type of music, Viet Cong has created a unique, standout album in a genre where it is easy to get lost.

The album opens with the distortion heavy and muffled “Newspaper Spoons.” Primitive drumming is accompanied by seven lines of repeating lyrics and a squealing guitar. Suddenly, all quiets and a spacey synth seamlessly becomes the focal point of the track.

The album’s best track, “March of Progress,” has a similar opening structure. The constant, beating drum gives way to what sounds like it could be a tribal chant. In the final part of this track, an upbeat guitar riff and pleasant vocals take over the droning chanting. Again, this track seems like it could be two separate parts, but is blended together flawlessly.

Much of this album is devoted to the instruments over the vocals. Long guitar and drum breaks take the place of verses on many songs. These arrangements are very well done. The franticly paced sixth track “Silhouettes” is full of tight guitar, and track that best shows the ability of drummer Mike Wallace.

On their self-titled debut, Viet Cong breaks the mold of the modern post-punk album, creating an album that differentiates them from the pack.

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