Viet Cong, “Viet Cong”
Born from the tragic (and too, too soon) end of Calgary band Women with the death of guitarist Chris Reimer in 2012, Viet Cong’s self-titled debut continues an inescapable, momentous legacy. The ties that bind Viet Cong to its past may never be broken—ex-Women members Matt Flegel (vocals, bass) and Mike Wallace (drums) are joined here by guitarist Danny Christiansen and Women producer Chad VanGaalen’s live guitarist Scott Munro; Women’s record labels Jagjaguwar and Flemish Eye are now Viet Cong’s—but the band are not continuing a thread so much as they are stitching something entirely new from frayed ends. Songs thunder and roll across the record like ominous stormfronts, evolving in moody dynamics effortlessly. Rhythmic, percussive exercises complemented by defiant tonal droning form something both experimental and revolutionary. Nearly incapable of being confined by one song (or one record), the myriad of ideas, energies, and, yes, precedents of Viet Cong’s sound is a pivotal, powerful criterion for the boundless future ahead.