Vermin Prolificus opens up like a fist smashing into your face, forcibly ejecting your molars and leaving you broken and bleeding on the floor of a dingy piss-soaked truck stop bathroom. If this sounds like an attractive proposition to you then you need to start filling your ear holes with Fistula’s newest offering – a sludge filled, drug worshipping, cop bashing dose of Ohio metal by way of eyehategod. Fistula have been marketing their brand of metal going on 16 years and in that time have developed a sound that, though instantly identifiable as “sludge”, stands apart from it’s contemporaries due to the skill of its members and the highly skilled production.
Not content to ride the slow and low sound like many others in the sludge game, Fistula show that they can pick up the pace on tracks like Harmful Situation, breaking you out of the dope-daze hypnosis their slower tracks induce. Being able to switch so effortlessly between dirty sludge and more hardcore styles show that Fistula are something akin to underground masters of their craft. Throughout all of this, vocalist Dan Harrington uses his raw vocals to command the attention of the listener and provide a point of focus lest you get sucked into the sludgy abyss. As well, the choice of audio samples that play overtop of instrumental section of some songs really act to tie the album together thematically – that theme being drugs, distrust of authority and nihilism.
Favorite Track : “Smoke Cat Hair and Toe Nails” – First off, that’s probably one of the best track names I’ve come across all year. If a title that just plain awesome both in print and to say wasn’t enough, this track kicks your ass from beginning to end. Opening the album it shows you exactly what Fistula is all about, from the slow kick to the head of their low-end attack to the choice of audio samples to the tortured screams tying it all together. Give it a listen and just remember, “the drugs are more important than you”.