T.O.M.B. – Third Wave Holocaust CD Black Plagve 2013
Via this release T.O.M.B. (aka Total Occultic Mechanical Blasphemy) has been welcomed to the roster of Malignant Record’s sub-label Black Plagve. Noting that the Black Plagve imprint caters for the harsher and less refined side of underground industrial related sounds, this should give a cursory indication of what to expect herein.
From the crude, filthy and overblown industrial noise aesthetic of the opening track ‘Antagonizing the Unknown’, this bleeds into the following piece ‘Electric Exorcism’ and in the process establishes the tone for much of the album. Accordingly this wind tunnel style of echo blasted clamour is exemplified on these sweeping black industrial noise compositions (which span the album’s 55 minutes). Yet by the time the third track ‘The Great Venerat Insult’ arrives, the heavy intensity slackens off slightly to embody an expansive catacombal ambience, driven by slow ritualistic drums, rumbling bass and distant sweeping tones. ‘Na La Gore Na’ then elevates the tone again where the morbid chanting and dank, echo treated atmosphere builds to overblown caustic proportions. Although the term “respite” is entirely relative to an album such as this, ‘Disrupting Admin’ is slightly less intense, where the catatonic bass guitar is distorted to the point of abstraction and combined with waves of crumbling static. ‘Vom Voodoo’ mixes things up ever so slightly with the inclusion of (you guessed it) tribal hand percussion, yet the predominant overblown noise production remains as a constant. Interestingly the final of the ten tracks ‘Tribute to Hanhua’, sees the album concluded in subtle rather than seething guise, containing a cavernous aesthetic with far off choral chanting and what sound to be distorted gong tones.
With its freeform structure and noisy, echoed infused production, unfortunately ‘Third Wave Holocaust’ suffers somewhat from a lack of variation between tracks which tend to blur into a singular and larger sonic mass. It is also a shame that on the visual side of things the album is let down in presentation given the rather ugly digital artwork, which is more akin to a bad B grade horror flick. To this ear this is the type of album that is amply adequate for a number of spins, but is unlikely to be elevated to an album that will warrant repeat visitations.