Virus – Momento Collider (Karisma Records)

Genre: Experimental Rock/Avant-Garde

Virus have proved throughout their 16-year career, that there are plenty of sonic riches to be found in exploring rock’s outer limits. And while the jarring riffs, off-kilter rhythms and bubbling bass of Momento Collider take some getting used to, it’s an intriguing album – and one that ultimately proves infectious.

The Norwegians embrace the cosmic post punk of Killing Joke and the avant-garde vision of bands like Voivod (whose guitarist, Dan Mongrain makes an appearance here) – yet the trio’s eccentricities mark them our as a unique proposition. Rogue Fossil, for instance, is initially disconcerting, yet you’re quickly carried along by its driving, relentless groove – it’s as if the trio are puppeteers, playing with your senses and pulling your strings.

Steamer is similarly warped, with Petter Berntsen’s swirling basslines seemingly add odds with the twists and twangs of Czral’s guitar: somehow though, it all works perfectly – and that can be said of the majority of Momento Collider.

A challenge? Certainly. But everyone needs to be pushed a little once in a while…

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8/10 Collision Course