Reviews

Scalping
Void

(Houndstooth)

8/10

Scalping are a truly liminal prospect, music outcast from the traditional parameters of genre. Black Lodge skronk, industrial techno from in between worlds, it is an unheimlich cocktail. As they finally offer us a full length, we can at last fully grapple with the sound that infected their excellent earlier singles. Scalping’s music is a novel and versatile beast that sits maladjusted between noise rock and leathery techno, a new mutant being pillaging the darkest sounds from music past and transforming them into something wholly new… and wholly unholy.

The Bristol group have been a live favourite for the last few years, but are equally prolific studio warlocks. Void is a brutalist opus; guitars are let rip amongst throbbing low-end basslines, while propulsive drums and mechanical white noise swamp the soundscape. Disparate elements come together perfectly. ‘Caller Unknown’ sees guitarist Nick Berthoud shoehorn a Scandi black metal riff into a battlefield of zapping synthesisers, whilst ‘Desire’ sees his muscular metal playing placed harmoniously into a writhing EBM track.

Their versatility makes itself even clearer on ‘Remain in Stasis’ and ‘Tether’, with rappers Grove and DÆMON respectively, the album’s crowning jewels. Here, Scalping channel the scorched earth horrorcore of CLIPPING, with added Sabbath riffs, as their hellscapes make for the perfect beats to these potent wordsmiths. Overall, Void is an accomplished work, a modernist genre splice that thrives in everything it attempts. Music from the in-between, this is the perfect soundtrack for existing in a very bleak world.

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