I haven’t heard anything from Vortis in over ten years, since I reviewed an album of theirs for my old zine. Back then, their singer was a fifty-nine-year-old professor at PurdueUniversity named “Fellow Traveler.” Now they’re down to a three-piece (with two vocalists and music critic Jim DeRogatis still drumming) and play fast, short, punk songs: seventeen songs in twenty-five minutes. It’s much better than the last time I heard them and any band that can keep me engaged for seventeen songs deserves some credit. Modern Savage has the brevity of the Ramones, with an occasional Big Black abrasiveness, and the aggressiveness of Dead Boys. It’s certainly not the best thing ever, but it’s much better than their last offering and the production is quite good. It didn’t blow me away, but it’s solid.
–kurt (Latest Flame)