Mok Nok "Slugstorm" LP
The name Slugstorm conjures up Apocalyptic images to me. It just seems like something sufficiently scary that would take place at the End of Times; a warning that things are not looking good and we need to watch our ways. Mok Nok’s new vinyl-only album, Slugstorm, is most definitely creepy, possibly horrifying under the right (or wrong) circumstances. The album also sounds apocalyptic – bleak, sometimes piercing, other time crunchy, metallic sounds break through. Although it sounds like a pure Noise record, it really is not. It draws you in with hooks, like a pop record, but don’t expect any choruses or typical pop formula. It isn’t found on Slugstorm.
Each song’s hook lies in the repetitive guitar crunch. The first side sounds like a traveling Gypsy carnival, growing progressively weary as it reaches the end of it’s journey…relief seems to grow as their stopping place nears. But disaster seems to strike with crushing, heavily-distorted guitars and noise. After the disaster, “Kuraku Naru Mae Ni” sounds like a funeral procession plodding along. “Rotorhead” is the last song on the A-Side and it sees the Gypsies getting pissed, looking for revenge. On the B-Side, the Mok Nokkian Gypsy Side Show Carnival are in the underworld looking for the ones that caused them the turmoil and trauma. They find what they are looking for in the “BoilRoom”; Satan in the form of an old, slinking woman who still has a charming quality about her despite her appearance and age (I mean, it’s Satan, (s)he is quite the charmer!). The final, and title track, “Slugstorm” shows the Gypsies running for their lives. We may never know what happened in their encounter with Satan, but “Slugstorm” makes one thing clear: building, building, building, STOP! When the track just cuts after such an intense building of anticipation and fear, I feel only one conclusion applies – our Gypsies failed, damnation their sentence.
Alright, maybe I got carried away, but the cover art doesn’t exactly go against my story and neither does the drawing of a cat skull on the inside of the sleeve! Anyways, Slugstorm is extremely addictive, and I highly recommend it.
The downside is it is only available on vinyl and it is limited to 300 copies. The upside is that this album seems to be made for vinyl; it takes full advantage of vinyl’s crisp sound. I imagine with wear this album will only start to sound better (unless it gets completely warped). Every pop and click would add to the ambiance of the album, making Slugstorm only seem more perplexing and foreign.
This is one of those rare albums that grows on you – yet it starts out amazing in the first place. One warning though, this is not for people who do not like extended, droning jams; they are all over this album helping to build the mood.