Once again Norway has shown that it is paving the way for inventive and exciting heavy music with noise punk duo Barren Womb, who have just released their debut record, the sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken. As their name might suggest, their music is raw, bleak and guaranteed to make you bang your head. Combining elements of hardcore, crust, black metal and even some country, Barren Womb has created a truly unique sound that you won’t soon get out of your head. It may not make you particularly optimistic about the future, yourself or life in general, but if that’s what you’re looking for then the sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken is going to blow your mind to pieces and bury it deep, deep in the ground.
the sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken opens with grating, atonal guitars and vocals that will make the hair on your neck stand up with the song “Kill Hicks.” Producing heavy keyboard tones in a way that in recent years only Kvelertak has managed, this energetic beginning tells listeners to prepare themselves for the crushing sounds to come. Toward the end of the record, listeners’ battered ears are treated to a Baroness-esque instrumental interlude, “Bong Aqua,” that thoroughly demonstrates their ability to write beautiful melodies while still expressing such intense passion. Barren Womb’s black metal influences shine through especially on the album’s final track, “Nexus Diplomus,” showing their ability to take on any heavy style in a creative and fully enjoyable way.
While sometimes a mash-up of a multitude of genres can sound muddled and alienate fans of any one of the styles, Barren Womb combines them in a way that has something for everyone. The only band doing a slightly similar thing would be Georgia’s Whores, and fans of them will find themselves mightily impressed by this band. If the sun’s not yellow, it’s chicken is any indication, and hopefully it is, there will be some really fantastic things to come from Barren Womb and we’d better pay attention.