The Icarus Line – Avowed Slavery
Hot on the heels of last year’s slow-burning Slave Vows, California’s meanest return with five more slabs of molten psychosis for our sick pleasure. If its predecessor felt like an exercise in unnerving tension and blood-spattered groove, Avowed Slavery is very definitely the flipside of the coin. It snarls, sneers, screams and – crucially – sweats its way through the Iggy-informed creepy-crawl of Leeches And Seeds, dripping with menace and drool. More voyeuristic thrills abound on the thoroughly wracked Junkadelic, where Joe Cardamone’s intense shrieks amplify the band’s staccato, Norman Bates-style stabs: truly delightful horror.
An immersive experience above all else, The Icarus Line’s sinister charms owe little to simple hooks or pop classicism, instead preferring to churn guts with gusto. Thirteen cacophonous minutes of the climactic The Father, The Priest, however, serve as a timely reminder that we are all in the gutter, but some of us are more adept at sifting through the slime.