Doom at high speeds, this is rock’n’roll for fans of Torche, latter-day Cave In and early Baroness. He Whose Ox Is Gored’s third EP in three years, ‘Rumors’ is more streamlined and melodic than the Seattle quartet have been before and it’s the best they’ve ever sounded. They shift gears between the thick grunge of their home state, serpentine riffing, and guitar lines peeled from the Botch back catalogue and make it sound easy. And if some of the balls-out bass-end bluster here has been heard before, the vocal interplay between founding members Brian McClelland and Lisa Mungo is captivating, consistently inventive, and elevates everything here out of the post-metal swamp. It might just be a little too soft for metalheads and a little too tough for stoners but squeezing three potent tracks into 10 minutes, ‘Rumors’ packs a powerful punch.


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