Abaddon magazine

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Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Review: Wolfbastard – Hammer the Bastards

Label: Clobber Records

Date: January 14th, 2022

Fact of life: there’s only one Impaled Nazarene. There are many who follow in their footsteps, swerving a bit to the left or right, but there is only one Impaled Nazarene. Me, I’m a big fan of the perverted Finns. I’m a big fan of the entire genre they placed on the global music map. As I ever do, I jumped into another representative of it. This time a British one. Never have I thought I will utter the words, but “Hammer the Bastards” failed to impress me. What’s more, and this one is surprising to me as well, I haven’t “felt” this release at all.

You all know what to expect from a crusty black metal album, or black punk metal, black n’ roll, whatever it’s called. Filth, perversion, alcohol induced vomit and extreme sonic torment. Wolfbastard is a band that certainly knows all that. They’ve studied all of these lessons and passed the test with flying colors. However, I’m still unimpressed with “Hammer the Bastards”. An album that’s swarming with everything I’ve mentioned above. Seriously, these half an hour should be delightful present for fans of Impaled Nazarene. Or in my case, my dear Canadian friends Black Pestilence. An atrocity for the faithful, if anyone should be left wandering after seeing the cover artwork. Sound rape of the religious manhood worldwide.

How does it miss the target within a guy who is such a massive target? I’m pretty much uncritical towards bands like this one.

Wolfbastard keeps to the tried and tested patterns throughout. Most of this, their third, album is a clear homage to blackened crust punk. At times, they slide down into simplified black metal, of the second wave provenance. In those moments the Brits keep to the minimalist side of the genre, raw and primitive. Still, those are just sort of intermezzos between two nuclear blasts.

The album is absolutely energetic. Filled to the brim and exploding with megatons, straight into your face. Furthermore, it is rhythmically diverse which is a rare occurrence in this musical style. So, what’s wrong with “Hammer the Bastards”? Why am I not into this?

Precisely, Wolfbastard didn’t create a single catchy track. We all know the secret to the appeal of punkish black metal, apart of the technical details I’ve counted before, are the tracks that make you sing along, while banging your head to a destructive drum pattern and kicking and screaming to the guitar slaughter. Memorable tunes that you cannot get out of your head, as much as you try.

There are attempts on this record, too. “Buckfast Blasphemies”, “Fear the Exxxekutioner” or the title track are on their way to achieving exactly this. Unfortunately, they fall short of their objective. Simply, not catchy enough.

That’s the whole problem with “Hammer the Bastards”. Still, it remains a correct album. An indecent exposure to a nun passing by. A chance to explode that rage pent up within an individual listener. A return to it on a future occasion is questionable, but a thirty one minutes well spent it remains.