Grey Widow have been around for barely a year (members have been/are in Dopefight, Parole and Evisorax) and their debut, I, is a record that belies that freshness – although the record itself is far from clean and pure. This monolithic beast of an album is slow, sludgy and disgustingly dark. It’s huge in tone and the UK quartet have created an album of complete misanthropic intensity and an experience that is harrowing, dirty and agonising.
Stark wastelands are conjured up by the fuzzed out guitar lines with “I” bleeding into the slow rhythms of “II” and spreading its plague throughout the harsh and differing vocal approaches that Grey Widow employ. The dual voices play off against each other and the violence of the music follows their lead with nihilistic soundscapes opening up the floor for utter annihilation. “IV” serves up doomed passages that tilt towards finality before “V” overwhelms with crunched down bass lines and ferocious, fighting vocals that battle for the upper hand. Neither succeed and instead they clash and twist around each other in a way that pushes Grey Widow ever further into the realm of danger.
I is a monstrous work and Grey Widow constantly seek out the filth and downtrodden aspects of life with this first full length. Heavy waves of aggression fill the smallest of spaces with final track “VII” spiralling into the abyss even during quieter moments. Stripped back passages of funereally paced doom inflections sit against the destructive cadence of the vocals while the song steadily gains ground and pace before breaking free of its chains and bursting into antipathetic life and dynamic stride.
You can buy I via Grey Widow’s bandcamp.
You can see Grey Widow live on June 6th at Power Lunches with Oblivionized and Old Skin in a show co-hosted by Bleak Metal and The Bloated Corpse of Punk.