Record of the Week: L.O.T.I.O.N.: World Wide W.E.B. LP

L.O.T.I.O.N.: World Wide W.E.B. 12” (Toxic State) When I wrote about Rakta’s latest album a few weeks ago I noted how the artwork stoked my anticipation, subtly signaling a big step forward for the band. One could say the same thing about World Wide W.E.B., as the murky, DOS-green color scheme of L.O.T.I.O.N.’s earlier vinyl releases has given way to something much more sophisticated and eye-catching. I can’t stop staring at the cover of this record. While there are clear influences (namely Soldier of Fortune magazine and the Terminator movies), they’re combined in a fresh and exciting way and executed flawlessly. The music is no less gripping. While L.O.T.I.O.N.’s tracks on the split with Scumputer were a wash of grey, World Wide W.E.B. sounds dense, dynamic, and powerful. There’s so much to love here—the inventive beats and rhythms, the catchy guitar and bass riffs, the grossly distorted vocals, and how they can all blend into one of the most punishing all-out assaults in my record collection—and each track combines these elements in a new and exciting way. While some songs recall the nightmare sounds of out-there industrial groups like S.P.K. or Whitehouse, others veer into the dance-y (I.C.B.M.) and even the anthemic (“Unplugged”). I’m a sucker for big, ambitious artistic statements, and World Wide W.E.B. not only swings for the fences, but knocks the ball out of the park.

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