Review: “Digital Pollution” by Wasp Mother

“Digital Pollution is a tongue-in-cheek jab at the modern idea of artists as content creators with each successive work being left behind as new content fills the void of malaise. With the digitization of art, the constant flow of social media feeds and the twenty-four-second-news-cycle our appetites and attention span for media has become insatiable in a way where the meaning of the art we’re viewing is being lost in a sea of likes, comments, the all-knowing algorithm. Spiralling through depressive doom-scrolling while trying to climb the fettered ladder between streaming movies, tv shows, audio books and videogames Digital Pollution found itself contrived amongst classic literature, real world pain, and the horrors of history. This is our way of saying, ‘Shut the fuck up and listen, this is bigger than us, this is bigger than you.’ Stop and smell the fucking garbage.” ~ Kevin Sigourney, Guitars and vocals

A four piece Power Violence fuelled Grindcore outfit hailing from Weymouth Massachusetts who cite influences in Converge, Pig Destroyer and Trap Them to name but a few,  Wasp Mother have been a growing concern since they formed in 2021. They released two EPs in their first full year as a band with a four track demo in June 2022 followed by “Self-Loathing” in the October. Both of those are to be considered sonic assaults on the senses of searing blast beats and crushing breakdowns with that classic violent turbulence of the genre in which they paint the white to grey.

Recorded by Pete Walsh (Swamphead, Ritual Blade, Morgued) at Heavy Hangs Studio in their native Weymouth before being mixed and mastered by Erol Ulug (Mortal Wound, All Out War, Rotting Out) at Bright Lights Basement in Santa Ana California, “Digital Pollution” is the kind of record that slaps you across the face like a woman scorned. That woman is vocalist Jenny Mac, whose feral vocals cut through you like battery acid and give the record a schizophrenically manic cutting edge as the genre bending musicians deliver the kind of primal Death Metal infused, Hardcore Punk soaked Grindcore that makes you want to get in the pit. Opening cut “Gravemouth” hits with an unnerving mid tempo gut punch in the first half before clicking into gear with a huge tempo swing for an almighty second half that will floor you like an uppercut from a prize fighter. “Burnout” then bursts forth as a 42 single verse of Hardcore Punk infusion as Mac screams “So sick of you!” while raising her middle finger to the World. It might be a simple recipe but it’s lethally effective. “Boring” is carried over from the bands “Self-Loathing” EP and is eight seconds shorter, the churning claustrophobic main riff giving it a surprising amount of groove. Dark and delicious this one confirms that the band are capable of slowing down to get their message across if they want to; they just don’t want to and why should they? Tearing the discerning listener inside out during a second half as violent as the first half is steady “Hubris” is the kind of brutal assault that leaves you bloody and yet smiling before “Akathisia” does likewise in 17 seconds. Move over Vast Slug, Wasp Mother want to play 30 songs in a 30 minute set and steal your crown. But they also have a song that surpasses five minutes to close in “Pale” that smashes the living daylights out of any idea that you might have had that this four piece were a one trick pony. Doom Metal heavy with shoegazing vibes, it’s like they brought a shotgun to a knife fight and discharged both barrels down your ear drums… [7.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. Gravemouth
  2. Burnout
  3. Boring
  4. Hubris
  5. Akathisia
  6. Pale

Digital Pollution” by Wasp Mother is out 19th January 2024 and should be available over at bandcamp.

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