Album Review – Viet Cong

Viet Cong album cover

Viet Cong -‘Viet Cong.’ (Jagjaguwar)

Before the release of this album, there were two tracks doing the rounds, and one of them was ‘Silhouettes.’ I bring this up as it’s a great track if not necessarily typical of the album as a whole.

Canadian band Viet Cong has been described as being post-punk, which they are in spirit, but it should be noted that their spiritual forebears are the uncompromising likes of Pere Ubu, Throbbing Gristle and PIL (without so much of the dub reggae of the latter). It is a very good album, and doesn’t take any prisoners. Right from the off, it grabs your attention with ‘Newspaper Spoons’ and holds your ears in its vice-like to the closing moments of ‘Death,’ which clocks in at over eleven minutes.

Post-punk was about exploring possibilities beyond what was perceived as the ultimate limitations of punk. It’s perhaps a mixed blessing that it’s utterly conceivable that this record could have come out in 1979, but the ultimate thumbs-up is that it would be a challenging but rewarding listen in ’79 or 2015.


Viet Cong is out now on Jagjaguwar.

Presenting…Viet Cong

Viet Cong

Despite their name, Viet Cong are actually Canadian. (Much like Berlin were, in fact from LA, and Kim Wilde had never been to Cambodia.) The Calgary, Alberta band will release their self-titled debut on January 19. Vocalist and bassist Matt Flegel and drummer Mike Wallace, formerly of Women, who joined forces with guitarists Scott Munro and Daniel Christiansen to make a rightly acclaimed post-punk sound.

Their hotly tipped debut includes the following two excellent tracks:

The tracklisting for the album (released through Jagjaguwar outside of Canada) is as follows:

1. Newspaper Spoons
2. Pointless Experience
3. March Of Progress
4. Bunker Buster
5. Continental Shelf
6. Silhouettes
7. Death

The band will also be playing a handful of dates in Scotland and England in February:
February 4 Oslo, London
February 5 Deaf Institute, Manchester
February 6 Broadcast, Glasgow
February 7 Brudenell Social, Leeds
February 8 Green Door Store, Brighton