Whatever Forever

Don’t let the pleasant band name fool you—Oozing Wound is a merciless slaughterhouse of raunch and riffs. The Chicago power trio cuts through the shit (again) on their third record, Whatever Forever, delivering a stunningly unhinged set of songs that falls somewhere between early Nirvana and early Death. Chugging thrash riffs are met with sloshed punk attitude that conjures up images of splintered instruments. Songs like “Rambo 5 (Pre-Emptive Strike)” and “Diver” (the latter boasts a brilliantly menacing, razor-precise riff) wear a permanent smirk, but also remain topical. Same with the more sprawling “Weather Tamer,” which calls out James Inhofe, the Oklahoma senator and author of The Greatest Hoax, who used a snowball to try and refute climate change. All the while the music is delivered with artery-bulging intensity from beginning to end. It’s not exactly heavy metal, but you won’t hear anything heavier this year.