Album Review – Sunndrug, Exit Wounds

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Exit Wounds - Mind Over Matter Records

Sunndrug was formed by Jimmy Reeves and Chris Raines, the former was trying to reconcile the end of a long term relationship and the latter was seeking a new musical outlet, the bones of what would become Exit Wounds was written by the duo, with the addition of a seasoned crew of musicians, including Chris Raines, the former drummer of Norma Jean and Spitfire, Sunndrug was born. Exit Wounds is their debut full length, and given the album is released on Halloween, this is an appropriately dark album, but not in the ghouls and goblins sense, this is an album that covers dark personal territory that is far more mentally scarring than a dozen movie screen psychos could ever hope to be

Exit Wounds is a record that touches on themes of self loathing and self idolatry, musically this is the equivalent of that dark whisper from your inner demons that no one knows better than you do. White Ladders sets the tone, a dark subtle bassline and minimalistic percussion are constant dominant elements, whilst haunting guitars and vocals add an ominous tone. Denial ups the pace but retains the desperation and sinister nature of the album, before Blackout and Psy-Vamp return to the dark forbidding side of this albums personality. Nowhere on this album is the disquieting side of this album on display than on numbers like the title track and Echolalia, both are brooding instrumentals that raise the hairs on the back of your neck.

Exit Wounds is dark not only in its subject matter, but also in its tone and instrumentation, it seamlessly integrates electronics into the ebbing and flowing crashes, whilst parts of Exit Wounds almost feel industrial, there is an unsettling melody that keeps this from becoming an exercise in noisy stamping. Exit Wounds wasn’t intentionally picked for a Halloween album review but sometime synchronicity plays a role in these things, this is a tormented and haunting album that is completely appropriate for this darkest of days. With the exception of Denial, the only comparatively upbeat number on the album, this is a poignant and evocative album that reflects the inner turmoil of a psyche in torment.

Mind Over Matter Records website can be found here and Sunndrug‘s web presence is here

Happy Halloween from The Punk Site