Record Reviews

Widows Walk

Spider Vomit are heavy. Like 70s downers that are now illegal, they take the torque out of everything. Even when they get all Sonic Youth on it, there’s still a fearsome shudder to this Melbourne quintet. Widows Walk* is their debut EP and it’s all kinds of fascinating. A nasty power trio fronted by two vocalists, they summon up The Stooges on ?No Way? and then max out the malicious ennui with nightmare keyboards, while ?Problems? crosses a relentless guitar strut with hoarse vocals, a prog-rock tribute and a bizarre interlude featuring the vapid voices of a crowd. But if their detours and detritus sound like mere splinters of fun that distinguish the band from their contemporaries, there’s nearly always a purpose to their playfulness. Listen closely and you hear that when vocalist Craig and Hannah aren’t driving to Death Valley together, one will undercut the other’s intent with a veiled counter vocal buried beneath the guitar and rhythm section. And when they pull out the howitzer for ?Evil Bloody?? it never obliterates the band, instead just emphasising their harsh beauty. *Widows Walk could get the party started. It could just as easily end it.