VRGNS - Miscarriage (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Miscarriage (2008)

Kiss of Death

Virgins is one of the new projects arisen from the ashes of the mighty New Mexican Disaster Squad, and while bands started under similar circumstances are rarely the sum of their parts, Miscarriage hits pretty hard and rarely lets up in its entire 25-minute running-time.

For those expecting a straight NMDS clone, well, you'll only be a tad disappointed. The `80s hardcore influence is here, sure, but it's a little less pronounced. Instead, Virgins take those influences and mesh them with slightly more melodic tones while still maintaining a healthy level of grit to cover everything. Opener "Another Gun" sees Sam Johnson spouting off fiercely political lyrics in the form of a throaty yell, while the rhythm section pounds underneath him. There's also some fairly neat guitar riffs found in this song, as well as in "Perfect World" and "WWZD."

The aforementioned `80s hardcore influence is brought to the forefront on the blistering "Bloodlust" and the pissed-yet-melodic "Escape from '07," in which Johnson paints a sordid picture lyrically: "I'm skipping my own funeral / Coffins and urns and graves / It doesn't feel like anyone's safe / I'm skipping my own funeral / One less victim." Spooky. The catchiest chorus (and best song title) on Miscarriage undoubtedly goes to "Guitarmageddon," it being one of the few times on this record that Johnson can actually be heard singing instead of yelling or barking.

The rhythm section carries "Atheist In imerica" and the surprisingly heavy "Burn," the latter featuring some well-placed "whoa"s. And I'll be damned if the bouncy attitude permeating from "White Night" doesn't remind me of some of Rocket from the Crypt's best moments.

The boys ventured up to Louisville to record Miscarriage in five days with Chris Owens of Lords, so if you're familiar with the work of Mr. Owens you should know what to expect from a production standpoint -- the instruments are loud, yet slightly muffled at the same time to give the record an unpolished vibe that suits the nature of these songs quite well.

Most everyone dearly misses New Mexican Disaster Squad, but with the members keeping busy in not only Virgins, but the equally awesome Gatorface and the mysterious No Friends, we can't sulk for too long.