When I reviewed the debut EP by Vancouver’s WTCHDR in 2012, I wrote: “WTCHDR brings together a bit of gory old Carcass, a bit of Dismember, a bit of crawling death/doom, a bit of crust-punk, a few nail-bombs, and some arson at a nursing home. Put all those bits together and you get an earful of chainsaw violence that will hold your interest from start to finish.” The comments were even better. One compared the band’s speed and fury to Trap Them. Another commenter wrote: “That guitar tone makes me want to do things with 4 liters of whiskey and half a mascot suit.” Only the top half, no doubt.
I also admitted in the review that I was kind of afraid to listen to the EP before I started, given the presence in the band of two marauders (Cam and Kevin) from the Vancouver grind band Burning Ghats. Perhaps you can imagine my trepidation when I learned that WTCHDR are about to release their debut album, which is entitled Triumph and Despair. But I girded my loins with sheet metal and even agreed to premiere a song from the album named “I Think I Can”, which features guest vocals by Andrew Drury of Southern Lord artist Baptists — as if WTCHDR weren’t hardcore enough on their own without a terrorist like that in the mix.
“I Think I Can” rumbles like a freight train and stomps like your spine is a snake that needs killing. Selfishly I would have preferred that the song were longer, but on the other hand I still had one working leg by the time it ended, so there’s that.
Blending hardcore, crust, and metal, WTCHDR can put a helluva charge into you in a quick burst. This whole album rocks.
Triumph and Despair will be released digitally on the WTCHDR Bandcamp page on April 1. Tapes will be released beginning at the band’s April 26 album release show at Vancouver’s Astoria Pub. Below you can listen to “I Think I Can”, and below that I’ve also included a previously released video for the album’s second track, “Our Filthy Hearts”, which features tarantulas and snakes, who of course are right at home with the band.
As a trained medical professional, I urge you to gird your loins.