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HEADSHRINKER Conjure Up Twisted, Contorted Death Metal With Callous Indifference

Callous Indifference

Denver, CO is a great place to go for both weed and death metal. One of the latest heavy acts out of the area is Headshrinker.

And the four-piece is here with their debut album Callous Indifference. From the band’s Bandcamp page, they exist as an expression of mental struggle and an expression of pain. And much like pain, the band’s tortured music is not simply a foray into death metal itself. Though they put it in more detail.

"This record symbolizes the large struggle I have faced with mental health over the years and is inspired by persevering through dark times and the will/strength to battle through when the outlook is bleakest. Its themes touch upon self-isolation, emotional disconnect, lack of trust, insomniac struggle, and existential crisis but it all left for the listener to interpret on their own term. We all have our ways of dealing with pain, and this record embraces the pain and finds the expression born out of raw emotion. I also hope it paints mental health in light that shows it to be more than its singular stereotype and stigma. We all struggle and only death is real."

Headshrinker would maybe fit most snuggly into the death category, though their sound is varied well beyond that. And this is evident during the opening track. Things start out on “The Burn of Indifference” as one would expect from a death metal band. It is brutal, it is heavy, and it is moving in for the kill. The riff is a smooth slice of old-school death metal, it gets a little techy but remains on the straight and narrow. However, the band takes a turn for the doom pretty quick, slowing things down but keeping things proggy/tech. And then the band dips even deeper into doom, with some very bluesy leads.

Within the space of a single song, it is apparent that Headshrinker, while again very death metal, travels far beyond the graveyard territory. Kicking in tech/prog riffs quickly becomes a staple of the band if nothing else to throw the listener around and make their neck contort. But that’s not to say the tracks are not emotive. “Immolated Witches” is an especially brutal and melancholy track. It is slow and melodic and builds into a brutal swell, drops back into melody, and comes back around. “Haunted By Your Reflection” is a similar experience, though starker.

Headshrinker also has some more straightforward moments. “Suffocating Tomb” and “Wretched Soul” are stomper songs that put plenty of twists and turns into the riffage but are largely death metal tracks with some old-school flair thrown in.

Headshrinker is a project that has a huge mastery over their sound. Those that enjoy bands like PyrrohnUltharTomb Mold,   Death is the framework and the doom/tech/prog moments are the spice they throw into their deadly stew. Callous Indifference certainly was not written with indifference. Those that like their death metal with plenty of twists are not going to want to miss this. Headshrinker is quite the head shredder.

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