Song of the Day

Moroi, “Immortal Beings” (Spiritual Madness, 2020)

Anthony Webster performing with Sick Shit (Photo: Keith Ballargeon)

October owns. Regardless of the unraveling of the modern world, it lends itself well to the unearthly and morbid.

Case in point is Spiritual Madness, the debut EP by the New Jersey vampire punx known as Moroi.

Sharing its namesake is a record label proper, Spiritual Madness’ inaugural release is sonically on brand for the spookiest of seasons. Yet another essential project from the Gel and Sick Shit family trees, Anthony’s sonic entry isn’t altogether unexpected but damn if the timing isn’t perfect.

Soundtracking global collapse as well as it does demarcating the line between eternal summer and a doomed autumn, this one rules. Somewhere in the swamps of New Jersey, indeed...

Also of note is the superlative visual aesthetic that caps off the label and first release. Sporting work from some of punk and hardcore’s most accomplished, Renata Sabina Rojo and Cain Cox tie the putridity together with their unique stylings. Get in on the ground floor with this label.

Unfortunately, the ground floor happens to be in a fucking haunted house... 

“Immortal Beings” creaks into being with a sample from Bela Lugosi’s inimitable and definitive Dracula. From there, it’s an interesting confluence of subgenres that marries the apocalyptic bacchanalia of death rock to the swirling treble of lo-fi black metal.

Sounding as if it’s literally emanating from the harsh and inhospitable bogs of the Garden State, Moroi is a macabre and maudlin exercise in bleakness. The song is an unholy marriage of catchy goth riffing, layers of atonal fuzz, the wet thump of propulsive drums, and absolutely bilious vocals.

As if forged to give birth to utter putrescence, the tail end of the song sports a halftime bruiser that’d absolutely devastate were it given a moment to breathe. Instead, the entire proceedings are cloaked in a funereal gauze.

Mind the pedigree, though, because you’re still as likely to spot the undulating freak flag inherent in Gel and the pugilistic stomp of Anthony’s other recent project, Buggy.

The self-described vampire punx are in season. Shit is ripe. Get it before the rot sets in. 

Tagged: moroi

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