It’s been almost two decades since Nottingham noise terrorists Iron Monkey released an album, two decades in which the tectonic plates of metal have shifted and cracked more times than Gordon Ramsay’s face, but the combination of enormous sludgy riffs and disgusting vocal malevolence has always been a winner, so while it’s easy to forget how belligerently unpleasant the band were, it’s easy to remember how great they were too after just one listen to comeback album ‘9-13’. Launching out of the traps with a bellowed ‘GO!’, opener ‘Crown of Electrodes’ sets the stall straight away, laying the foundations for an album of gnarly, punk riffing that has been dragged through all seven circles of hell while Jim Rushby barks and wails over the top like a Deadite in vat of hot piss. Riffs so grotesquely catchy they stick like a coat of leeches pour forth from the grimiest of guitars in the most spiteful way imaginable, distilling the very essence of sludgecore into nine blasts of stubbornly guttural filth, whether charging full-speed ahead on tracks like ‘Toadcrucifier R.I.P.PER’ and ‘Destroyer’ or crawling through the doomy mire of ‘The Rope’ and ‘Moreland St Hammervortex’. Rushby has always had a more spiteful approach to “singing” than his contemporaries in bands such as Eyehategod or Raging Speedhorn, but here the voice is used as weapon of torture first and instrument second, more often than not descending into a caustic, howling scree that evokes black metal at its indecipherable worst. Uncompromising in way that most bands couldn’t fathom, Iron Monkey make horrible, hateful, unpleasant music for horrible, hateful, unpleasant people, and long may that continue.