Wormrot – Abuse

By Rob Hughes

I thank Wormrot for making one part of this job easy. They’re easy to classify. They play grindcore, straight up, with pure bloodlines going back to Napalm Death. No sax solos, no circus interludes, no ambient digressions dilute the mix. There’s no bass guitar either, which has no effect on the scathing impact of their sound. They do a Yeah Yeah Yeahs cover, sure, but it blends right in as another burst of unadulterated, nasty-ass grind.

On Abuse, Wormrot fires off 23 songs in 21.8 minutes. They’re good songs, too; full of riffs, excitement, and fury. Guitarist Rasyid does a magnificent job of changing things up with hanging chords, punk passages, and thrash-metal moments. I have a couple basic, closely related, requirements for grindcore: does it rock and does it make me move? Wormrot meet them easily. It’s a musical assault, all right, but they manage to make it flow, push, and pull. It gets my foot twitching not quite in sync with the fearsome blasting. I can’t keep up.

The only problem—it’s not really an objective problem; more of a personal preference—is that I prefer grindcore that’s a little more overtly political. Considering that the trio hails from Singapore, which seems an interesting melting pot of a country, the anger in the lyrics is often vague, taking shots at posers, corporate whores, and general assholery. The shout-out to the scene in “Indonesia” is the most interesting to me, with its line “Quality humanity is what the world should fucking be.” I can get behind that. So I found no “Global Metal”-type insights into why Wormrot grinds so hard and so well, other than their obvious passion for the genre. Grind is the international language here, and Wormrot have mastered it.

8 / 10

(Earache Records)

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Adam has been a photographer for Hellbound since day 1 and also has a hand in the technical aspects of running the site.