ALBUM REVIEW: Vaee Solis ‘Adversarial Light’

‘Adversarial Light’
Signal Rex, August 2015

Vaee Solis warn: “We bow before no-one”. And nor should they, with a killer debut album like this to their name. ‘Adversarial Light’ is elegantly colossal, effortlessly unique, utterly distressing and yet utterly addictive. In short, Vaee Solis are incredible.

The Portuguese band have created six exquisite tracks of raw passion and raging sludge. The snarling guitars possess talons so sharp that they dig into your soul, grabbing your attention with their cruel, grinding riffs, and keeping you hooked for the entire 40-minute adventure. Not burdened with vast amounts of reverberating low-end, Vaee Solis’s music is still seriously heavy.

The violent, black metal-style vocals of Sophia Loureiro surge like poison in your bloodstream. The doe-eyed frontwoman, who also performs with hardcore band Lodge, may look delicate but her bleakly feral shrieking could stop a herd of rampaging buffalo in its tracks. Scary stuff. Sophia’s voice is blissful pain – she spits her blood and wisdom into a blistering sludge-doom hurricane.

And it’s not just the vocals that make this such a memorably malevolent release: the song arrangements are faultless. Tracks lumber along at a slow-ish pace but they never become repetitive or predictable. In fact, they usually grow – patiently, intuitively, naturally – until ultimately they expand into monstrosities of melody and madness. Only the song ‘Feral Isolation’ feels anything less than inspired – it’s a little raw and simplistic, lacking the brilliant energy found elsewhere on the album.

The album was released on cassette in very limited quantities in March, and is now being unleashed on CD format in August before a vinyl version hopefully arrives in a few months. ‘Adversarial Light’ is a fantastic album of ferociously beautiful sludge-doom that deserves to be heard.


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