Thanks to a lethal combination of blood-curdling howls and sludgy guitars, WTCHS’ introductory release ‘Wet Weapons’ could never have been accused of playing it safe. Its successor doesn’t let up in the aggression stakes either and this band from Hamilton in Canada continue to convince with their brutal, angular punk.
Picking up where they left off, ‘Young Girls’ offers ominously doomy bass, guitars which clang, thick drums and chanted vocals; the atmosphere hangs heavy for an aural asssault and the group never let go of your ears after that. ‘Top Prize’ is less drone-influenced and offers sequences of staccato rhythms and grimy post-punk. It’s licenced to thrill and chill in equal measure and there’s even a totally unnecessary burst of static halfway through the song just to make sure you’re paying full attention, one presumes. Then comes a surprise: ‘Overkilmer’ rides on a relatively smooth passage of melodic bass and even the shouted vocals seem slightly restrained, making it the most mainstream moment on the EP and perhaps realising this, WTCHS have even made a video for it. After the Motorhead-esque ‘Tiger’, there’s an eerie almost religious, possibly devil worshipping feel apparent, exemplified by the intense psychedelia of a song brilliantly named ‘Neil’.
WTCHS are a band who can control their own brand of chaos making their punk-infused songs swell with excitement and danger. With so much intensity and energy on display on record, one can imagine they’re an incendiary live act too.