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Universal acclaim - based on 10 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The fourth full-length release for Margaret Chardiet as Pharmakon was recorded live in studio by Uniform's Ben Greenberg.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Sep 3, 2019
    Devour is the first Pharmakon album which was recorded live in the studio, and there is a sense of organic creation to it which is pivotal to the ideas layered within. The warmth of the production separates this album from her previous three, perhaps even suggesting a sense of hope for humanity in the face of overwhelming odds which are stacked against us.
  2. Aug 29, 2019
    That Devour is such a tiring album is a testament to its cohesiveness. These tracks flow elegantly into one another, and the attention to dynamics and tension allows for seamless listening.
  3. Aug 29, 2019
    Rhythm plays a strong role in all Pharmakon albums, but Devour has a stronger pull and a denser composition. One rhythmic track layers on top of another, sometimes swallowing each other up and sometimes taking songs into different directions. ... Devour isn’t a rallying cry for change, it’s a reflection of the ugliness of it all, from the inside out.
  4. The Wire
    Aug 29, 2019
    Devour is unwaveringly formless; drills, drones and hysterical screeches become food for trauma. It’s frightening, at many points torturous, but not without emotional weight. The record mirrors what oppression really looks, sounds and feels like – no pool parties, ice tea, sunglasses and shiny colour palettes, just untamed agony, screaming and pain. [Sep 2019, p.60]
  5. Aug 30, 2019
    Pharmakon's devouring is whole and ugly, but it carries a rewarding narrative about the importance of suffering — we're eating ourselves alive, but we're also becoming stronger for it, each act of self-cannibalization and each listen to this album more like a single coil in an upward spiral of transcendence than a snake eating its own tail.
  6. Sep 20, 2019
    Devour is best experienced from front to back. Shifting from Chardiet’s possessed screams (Spit It Out), to the dial-up-modem-from-Hell (Self-Regulating System), to grotesque static (Deprivation), Devour is shockingly sublime, like some warped, morally corrupt gradient. What’s equally mystifying is how textured and thematic these songs are, subtleties and surprises that are only revealed through brave, dedicated consumption.
  7. Sep 30, 2019
    As a propulsive work, fueled by immediacy and intensity, Devour rejects the attempt to escape the body through the gear-consumed noise fetishist.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Sep 3, 2019
    Pharmakon's most accessible set yet. While not as good as Bestial Burden, this is the best drone and noise album of the year.

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