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Yanomamö – No Sympathy for a Rat

No Sympathy for a Rat
by Gary G. Hernandez at 26 July 2020, 6:18 PM

YANOMANÖ are an indigenous people who live in the Amazon rainforest between Brazil and Venezuela. They reside in communal villages, shelter in large structures called shabanos, practice a unique kind of ritual cannibalism, and partake in hallucinogens . . . purely for medicinal purposes, of course. They were sensationalized in the controversial 1980’s Italian film, “Cannibal Holocaust.” They are also a foursome Sludge Doom Metal band out of Sydney, Australia who have been cranking out savage Metal since 2011. This variety of YANOMANÖ started as a side-project band but over the years have edged forward to center stage. They have one full-length album, one split, and four EPs to their credit — the fourth, “No Sympathy For A Rat,” is due for release on August 7, 2020 on Iommium Records.

No Sympathy For A Rat” is a four-track assault thick with fat, boggish riffs and accented with harsh, gravely vocals. Lyrically, who knows. My hearing is too shot to decipher, but they seem fairly angry/passionate about someone who can be characterized as a rat. Them and James Cagney. Musically, this is a decidedly Doom Metal album, though track three, “Miasma,” accelerates to near Death velocity. Not surprisingly it is also the shortest on the album. If they slowed the bpm to Doom proportions, it would probably be as long as the other tracks. The intro splice lifted from the 2013 remake of “Evil Dead” (when the abomination says “I can smell your filthy soul”) is also a nice touch, meshing well with the title.

While the entire album is fairly consistent quality wise, my favorite track is “Iron Crown,” with its groovy melody and isolated riff interludes. The track feels like two distinct songs, with the second starting at the four-minute mark when Clarence Wandren Albatross strolls in with a fuzzed-out bass line and Jason Higson hangs out some grizzly feedback to dry. I should mention that right before this break, Jack Thomas throttles his kit like it just won’t stop talking back. And then right around the 4:40 mark all the music stops and Scott Tabone goes ballistic on vocals. Again, no idea what he’s going on about, but whatever it is, it sounds like he means it.

As you would expect, title track “No Sympathy For A Rat” is another massive track. Standout work from Jack Thomas on the drums helps to set this track, and the band, apart. Actually, the rhythm volley between Jack on the drums and Clarence on bass is impressive and adds a finesse you don’t always find in Sludge. “The Offering,” track three, also comes across as two tracks collapsed into one with a significant movement shift around the 3:30 mark when things start to get spacey and dark.

YANOMAMÖ has topped off their already impressive catalogue with another formidable album. The songwriting is confident and navigates over some sonically diverse terrain. The production values are solid and draw out some of the more nuanced aspects of a sometimes undervalued subgenre. Altogether, “No Sympathy For A Rat” is a solid offering from a band that knows their way around the murky swamplands of Doom.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. No Sympathy For A Rat
2. The Offering
3. Miasma
4. Iron Crown
Scott Tabone – Vocals
Jack Thomas – Drums
Clarence Wandren Albatross – Bass
Jason Higson – Guitar
Record Label: Iommium Records


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Edited 13 June 2021

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