Vincent Black Shadow begets Murder


Murder EP


Murder Murder EP (Friends) Murder is the most direct descendant of the band Vincent Black Shadow, which flourished around Baltimore for several years making bloody-raw punk-psych. VBS broke up a couple of years ago, and its local heavy-music dream team shot off in a couple of different directions, with Murder—not-goodness of name heretofore acknowledged—getting frontman Adam Savage and guitarist Dan Owen, along with Baltimore punk-scene heavy Noel Conrad (of Lady Piss, Triac, and onward) and Fishnet Stalker Ray Peters. Phew. Maybe don’t even think about personnel, though: The lineage is plenty sonic too. You can capture that special feeling of careening around a dark post-industrial city in a beat-up American-made automobile with a vomit stain somewhere inside of it only so perfectly and, man oh man, Murder is not stopping for anything and here’s a bottle if you need to go.

Murder is at least more to the point than Vincent Black Shadow—less Southern whiskey-rock stylized, less noodley. Songs are brief, aggressive, and wicked heavy, about how you’re going to die anyway, being godforsaken and how awesome black leather is, how frustrating the same old shit is, and, generally, the nihilism of living hard and fast. It’s fun, the sort of music that bunches you all up into an anxious knot and yanks in that one special place, and the result is punk-rock-as-agonized-catharsis. Contract and release, push the gas a little harder. And Murder would be heavy, of course, even without the walls/swipes of distorted guitar played in the key of motorcycle, as just an acoustic guitar and Adam Savage doing something to his throat that will surely require some kind of surgical removal procedure later in life. (At the same time, some snips of backing vocals, presumably Conrad or an actually un-overdriven Savage, go a long way.) In the end, it feels good to feel like this for the duration of this short EP, bashing around into parked cars and not caring: “You’ve got to burn like a volcano/ It’s always good to get your mind blown/ You might die on the weekend, you might die next week.” True words cut simple.

Murder celebrates its record release at the Golden West cafe Feb 4. For more information visit

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