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Burn your body, free your soul.

Metal, even at its most neanderthalic, has been about transcendence. The moment in the mosh where the flailing limbs start to resemble a larger pattern, the chaos in the wall of sound solidifies into coherence. And no one puts that duality to work like Whores. The Atlanta trio makes the meanest sludge-rock this side of The Melvins and their debut EP CLEAN was a brutal, yet smart opening salvo. So listen to our interview with them, read our thoughts on CLEAN and see why it’s the best of the 10s.

I don’t know what makes me feel ok. Music, really. Coffee, cats, fuzz pedals. Basic stuff really.
— Christian Lembach


“I AM NOT A GOAL ORIENTED PERSON,” “COUGARS NOT KITTENS,” Whores. have a sick sense of humor. But that’s clear from the opening punch of “BABY BIRD” a salute to destroying the self in all sorts of horrific ways to be born again. A death of the ego through fuzz pedals.

From a surface reading, CLEAN sounds like a shock for shock’s sake release, from the artist’s name down. But the fiercely political trio use their sludge to fight for common folks: sex workers, miscreant punks and other factions that elite classes view as undesirable. The punishing low ends and fiery yelps of front man Christian Lembach cry out for both a self-cleanse and revolt, combined in unholy harmony. In an album filled with bar fights and drunken stupors, the bookends speak to an ascent through this morass of thrilling noise.