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Warped indie-rockers Viet Cong release debut disc

Muhammad Ali, famously, had no quarrel with the Viet Cong. Others did, though, because they fought weirdly, with booby traps and sneak ambushes. U.S. soldiers of the Vietnam War didn't know where the Viet Cong were coming from or when they were coming.

Which brings us to the warped indie-rockers from Calgary who have taken the name Viet Cong and properly released a lo-fi debut originally sold as a cassette off the stage while the band was on tour.

Featuring members of the beloved art-rock oddballs Women, the four members of Viet Cong make sharply angled music and odder drone stuff, and they do not fight honourably. One moment they're here with wiry power pop (Throw It Away), and in the next minute they're laying eighties-rock tripwires (Unconscious Melody). Vocals come from the mist, stylistic shifts come without warning, and the last track, Select Your Drone, makes no sense at all. Viet Cong play by jungle rules. Ignore them at your peril.

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About the Author

Brad Wheeler is an arts reporter with The Globe and Mail. More


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