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4 out of 5 skulls

Vermin Womb Permanence

Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire are no more—just a burnt, charred remnant—but like the mythical phoenix, a couple members of the band have come back. Instead of rising from ashes, however, they have been rebirthed within the reproductive organs of the order Rodentia as Vermin Womb. The band’s debut EP, Permanence, pretty much follows the former incarnation’s musical concepts, but with a more barbaric aggression.

Comprised of former CTTTOAFF members Ethan Lee McCarthy (guitarist/vocalist) and bassist Zachary Harlan, Vermin Womb also features new drummer Patrick Fiorentio. The result of this trio is a heaving maelstrom of death, grind and sludge slathered with filth and despondency. This is a beast of an EP and will have fans of any of the members’ current or past bands ready to tear some shit up.

“You Know Nothing” is nearly three minutes of destructive death/grind. Rabid drums, bowel-churning guitars and McCarthy’s guttural utterances spew from the speakers with a swarming malevolence—chaotic and unrelenting. The 18 minutes on Permanence feel likes a combination of CTTTOAFF and McCarthy’s other project, Primitive Man. “Bitterness” is strictly insane. It’s a scathing, grinding beast of a song, but it’s no match for the minute long, squelching “Setting Standards”—holy shit.

“9 Years Fruitless Years of Total Fucking Agony” slows things down with a healthy (or unhealthy) dose of sludge and despair. The four minute long song eventually erupts with pile-driving drum work and searing guitars (that also carry a bit of a blackened tinge) as McCarthy’s guttural growls fill the air. There are several temp lurches to keep you on your toes through your sludgy travels within this song. “From Below” almost gets lost amongst the din, but is still a solid outing in its own right, while album closer, “Gave” is full of squelching reverb and rabid-as-fuck drum work. The song is all over the dam place with off-kilter guitar work, scatter-brained tempo shifts and vicious growls.

I dig the hell out of Vermin Womb and their debut EP, Permanence. The combination of McCarthy and crew’s various other projects into this amalgam of death, sludge and grind infects the soul, leaving behind a filthy trail of destruction in its wake. I can’t wait for more!

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