Howdy, lunatics! Trevor from The Black Dahlia Murder here with another column chock full of extreme metal sickness. Really excited about the line up here, an eclectic mix from all walks of the extreme for your neighbors second-hand listening displeasure! I apologize for my tardiness with this installment. Again, my obligations to The Black Dahlia Murder have gotten in the way, the recording of our eighth (!) album in particular this time.
As I write this intro I am sitting in a hotel in Australia, on the verge of kicking off a five day tour with The Faceless, Putrid Pile and Whoretopsy. Should be sick one! Thanks for your patience and without further adieux, I bring thee 25 sick outings sure to fuck you up this spring, enjoy!
Apoptosis Gutrectomy – Eugenics Of Terrestrial Existence
Indonesia never seems to quit! They’ve become quite a hotbed for new death metal acts, particularly of the brutal death persuasion, and Apoptosis Gutrectomy is one of my newer favorites to emerge from this exciting scene. With their first full length effort, the young deviants deliver on the promise hinted at by their previous output; this is definitely their best yet! I enjoy the subwoofing nature of the production… it’s got a nice low end that makes sound like runaway bulldozer. If you like Disgorge (ca) or the legions of eastern bands worshipping them, these guys should satisfy your self-harming itch.
Grab it here
The Arson Project – Disgust
The Arson Project are a grindcore meets powerviolence ensemble screaming out of lovely Sweden with hateful aplomb, ready to decimate all within earshot with their violent and hate-fueled stylings. One of the members has ties to Birdflesh, but let me tell ya, there isn’t a laugh to be had here. These guys are politically charged and deadly serious negative nancys. Don’t let the “metalcore 1999” band name throw you either, The Arson Project absolutely rage! If you enjoy the scathing, blown-out sounds of Nasum, Gadget, etc, you should get on this immediately. I am also reminded of Dead In The Dirt a good bit… the immediacy and directness of the material at hand is equally mean. There are some intensely heavy breakdowns married in here, and they are done very well. Disgust is exactly the album you need if you have any bottles around that need breaking. Turn this shit up and get to work! Nihilistic stuff!
Grab it here
Azarath – In Extremis
Haha! YES! Still as hellacious as ever! I’ve always had a soft spot for these guys, who a lot of you may know simply as Inferno from Behemoth’s other band. Time to get with the program, kids! Militant, hateful, blackened blasting death metal is what Azarath purvey, and they do it fucking well. Covenant era Morbid Angel is deep at the heart of Azarath’s cauldron of spite. Shit is as firey as it comes! Comparisons to more modern acts like Angelcorpse, Perdition Temple, and Infernal War could be drawn. The vocal assault of Marek “Necrosodom” Lechowski is like that of a possessed and rabid demon dog… ferocious! I would not cross this dude, no sir! In Extremis is sheer vitriolic death metal Armageddon. A spike covered fist to the face of all religion. Truly combative, truly sick!
Grab it here
Blame God – Strategically Confined
These dudes are fucking mental! Not for the faint of heart! Blame God play a scathing brand of lawless and extreme powerviolence/grind (with a pinch of death metal) out of Oneonta, New York that is the audial equivalent to a nailbomb to the face. It’s downright scary and insanely intense material sure to maim any takers. There is absolutely no fat nor filler here, just all violence to the very last feed back soaked drop. I actually enjoy the brevity here, I dunno how much of this sonic terror I could take in one sitting, it’s that fucking potent! Slick, professionally pressed tapes are made available by Bee-Side cassettes, and you can even try out the EP for free from their bandcamp, so what have you got to lose?
Grab it here
Blurring – Cloud Burner EP
Blurring are a really excellent grindcore super group out of New York State. With a pedigree so sick I wonder why these guys are talked about a hell of a lot more. Firstly of mention you have the multi faceted wizard Erik Burke on drums, who you may know better guitarist from Lethargy, Sulaco, Nuclear Assault, and Brutal Truth, respectively, and possibly as well as the skinsman for sickos Kalibas. Goddamn do I love me some Kalibas, what an incredibly underrated band. Fucking Lethargy? The same Lethargy that once boasted the talents of Mastodon’s Brann Dailor and Bill Kelliher in their extreme metal infancy? Yes, that Lethargy. And finally, a legendary bass contribution by lanky curly topped legend Dan Lilker (S.O.D., Brutal Truth, Nuclear Assault, The Ravenous, Anthrax), who has obviously been bandmates with Mr. Burke on several occasions by now, but none so jarringly weird ass this, and that’s even speaking for the off-kilter Brutal Truth. What a rap sheet, ladies and gentlemen, if that doesn’t whet your palette, you got some further research to do immediately. These guys are veterans and the proficiency with which they issue their sideways brand of thinking man’s grind is quite remarkable. It’s a monster EP of aggressive grinding damage with enough twisted metal shrapnel to slice the listener to absolute ribbons! You’ve been warned!
Grab it here
Bog Wraith – The Mire
Bog wraith are a really cool deathcore outfit of Lansing Michigan. I know “really cool” and “deathcore” might be an oxymoron to a lot of you, but here, let me explain my case. First of all, these guys can really play their instruments, they don’t rely on single string chugging all day or bullshit quantized blasting and played out “my first tremolo” riffs. Bog Wraith exist at an interesting and modern crossroads of extreme sounds. How they’ve managed to combine death metal, deathcore, and chunky slam sounds fairly original to this old geezer. It may not look that exciting on paper, but these guys tower far above much of their brainless brethren. The Mire exudes an atmosphere of total dread. It slithers into the ear. There isn’t a moment here where you wont feel like you’re being dragged down into the muck this dark, dank ep. Damn those killer harmonic rakes! They get me every time. The vocalist guy uses a bit of that high “fry” vocal but it’s thankfully not monosyllabic or annoying as a lot of them out there. He’s actually got a lot of different styles that he pulls from, it’s fucking nasty. As I said when talking about their last release, he has a very villainous delivery that is very believable. He is the slime covered Bog Wraith you seek when you hear their awesome Magic The Gathering derived band name. There is a real sense of synergy between band name, sound, theme and artwork here that’s quite impressive. Quit being a cop and give these sick young bastards a try, you won’t regret it.
Grab it here
Coprobaptized Cunthunter – Perseveration of Delirious Comprehensiveness
As you can probably guess by the name, these demented Russian deviants do not sound like Dream Theater. Coprobaptized Cunthunter play a grinding, blasting death metal with a hi tuned snare that simply devastates. This is about as depraved as it gets… Russia has a lot of really extreme acts on this end of the spectrum, absolutely pegged in the red. Sickcunt and Purulent Jacuzzi come immediately to mind as peers to these degenerates. While the last outing was especially heavy on the Brodequin influence (which is still here to a degree), I feel like the stanky and skronky chords used on this new EP are a bit more toward Enmity sometimes and Malignancy others. Like Malignancy, Coprobaptized Cunthunter are seldom straight forward in what they do, they are always chopping and screwing their grooves and intentionally toying with the listener. They fly though different parts and feels at an impressive rate, it’s schizophrenic in a way. It can make your spin. The low string stuff is extremely bassy, there is a subwoofy sound overall that I really enjoy. Gives it that bulldozing effect, a whirlwind of low end brutality with a snare cutting through violently. There is actually a decent amount of variety here, the guitar playing is technical and varied enough lend each song it’s own identity and give this lean slab of sickness a good amount of replay value. The vocals are of the indecipherable variety, a gaping butthole, but a dry one. This dry butthole mouth belongs to none other than Batu Çetin, of Turkish favorites Cenotaph. He does what he does well, there’s a reason hes one of the most respected vocalists in the brutal scene. He’s a legend in his own right. There are some disgusting guest vocals contributed by Delusional Parasitosis and Amputated Genitals puker James Shuster and Ligore Kitthammapirak from Ecchymosis. The last track is a pretty great cover of a Blood Duster song, from their underappreciated groove festival of an album Str8outtanorthcote. Overall, I am very pleased with this return, it was an entertaining listen. Grab this now from the exciting new label Reality Fade, you won’t regret it!
Grab it here
Disma – The Graveless Remains EP
This is absolutely filthy, as expected! Disma are Gods in my eyes, pure old school death metal perfection in every sense! As is the rest of their catalog, the doomed out sounds of early Finland permeate this is excellent two song offering. Like brethren Funebrarum, these guys have mastered the musty atmosphere of the tape trading era and the result is absolutely timeless. If an alien landed next door and asked me what death metal was, I would play this for him. It’s as true as it gets! I love that one of the first things you hear is that nice booming real kick drum. It sounds massive, as does everything to do with Disma. These guys must have tracked this doozy of an ep in level 4 of Super Mario 3… ya know, the one where everything is fucking huge! Craig Pillard is one of my favorite vocalists of all time. An absolute fucking legend. He is the definitive voice of dark death metal. He has that distinct low end bellow that has been copied time and time again. Roooooaaaaarr!!! I remember the first time he scared the shit out of me when I heard Mortal Throne of Nazarene as a 15 year old. I do still love Incantation but to me Pillard was their definitive voice. A hard fucking act to follow, I’m sure. I had the pleasure of seeing Disma one time a few years ago and it was monolithic as expected. I’m holding my breath now for another outstanding full length effort from these guys, it would surely make waves in this underground of ours. For now, choke on 14 minutes of pure worm-ridden death metal bliss!
Grab it here
Dodecahedron – kwintessens
Gotta love these guys, one of the best forces out their purveying that mathy dissonant death metal strangeness that the kids go crazy for. This is obviously post Deathspell Omega music, as are the bulk of these bands, but these dudes manage to forge their own identity within the wild world of weird more so than many of their peers. I first learned of Dodecahedron from their connection to Cynic by way of Exivious. Seems like a long time ago now and Cynic of course is in shambles at the moment. Truly a sad day for the underground. At least we still have thinkers like these dudes to challenge and stimulate our weed addled brains. Progressive, artful, dynamic and wildly entertaining, kwintessens is a fantastic album that will surely be seen again next winter on some year end lists.
Grab it here
Ensnared – Dysangelium
Wow! This is insanely good, and quite different from what I was expecting. I thought for sure we’d have another Entrails or comparable dark hm-2 fueled sound, which would’ve been fine with me, but no! This is something else entirely. Ensnared is cut from the same magickal cloth as the early works of Morbid Angel and demo-only geniuses Necrovore! If you were feeling that last offering from Mortem (peru), this album is a total must! You’ll notice the tracklisting is chock full of interludes, which I would normally sigh at, but they are really cool actually. I was prepared to skip them (like I do on every Necros Christos release) but it turns out they worthwhile pieces of music in their own right, perfect for setting up the unique mood woven by this incredible album. The first of which is an Autopsy-like dirge. I can dig it. If you are into the idea of summoning a demon through a portal into your very living room, Dysangelium can get it done, no questions asked. This fine album is a joint release effort between Ireland’s exciting Invictus Productions and the USA’s unstoppable Dark Descent records.
Grab it here
Evocation – The Shadow Archetype
Wow! This I did not expect from our old pals in Evocation. NOW this is the Evocation I know and love, no more weird Pantera groove metal influences creeping in. In their defense the first two reunion albums were pretty good if not a tad on the melodic side, but after that shit got kinda weird. I honestly don’t know what they were thinking for a while there. This new effort is back to the glory of their Sunlight Studios demo days. Just pure graven old school Swedish death metal… it definitely sees the band reclaiming a more macabre attitude! I had the pleasure of touring alongside these guys briefly on a Scandinavian run with Amon Amarth and they were very cool guys, especially the singer Thomas. We smoked some serious weed together (much to Amon Amarth’s fatherly disapproval) and I remember him raving about the creative and inspirational properties of his favorite particular strain, “bubble gum”. “You must try the bubble gum! YOU MUST!” he would say. Me and the dudes in TBDM still say “You must” all the time when trying to coerce each other into doing something. I don’t know if it was the member shakeup or the resurgence in popularity of old school HM-2 toting death metal that prompted this return to form but whatever it was I am thankful as I’m sure many fans are. If you want a taste of authentic old school Swedish death metal as only the old gods can provide, YOU MUST get this now!
Grab it here
Extremity – Extremely Fucking Dead
Really great stuff here folks! Extremity is an Oakland, California based death metal super group of sorts, harboring members from Cretin, Vastum, Necrosic, and punctuated by drumming talents of ex-Agalloch/ex-Ludicra, and current Vhol drummer Aesop Dekker. This shit is righteously fucking rancid, a godly blend of ugly as fuck old school death metal from the Swedish and Finnish schools, with a monstrous helping of rusty scalpeled goregrind. When I say goregrind, I’m talking Necrony, and early Xysma, not what you’d most likely associate that tag with nowadays. Part Symphonies Of Sickness, and part Into The Grave. All killer! I dig the back and forth between vocalists, the interplay is nice. Brings it into that Exhumed/Impaled realm a bit at times. Extremity is putrid, rotten, maggoty stuff sure to get even the most depraved of necrophiles off. Welcome to the spiraling, barf-breathed death trip of Extremely Fucking Dead, which is exactly what you’ll be by the last note. Can you survive death beyond death? FFO: Carcass, Xysma, Necrony, Inferia, Blood, Haemorrhage, Disgrace
Grab it here
To speed up load times, we had to cut this column in half. More recommendations on the next page…