Monday, September 22, 2008

Parasitic Extirpation demo review

Parasitic Extirpation isn't exactly a new name to me...I've heard the name thrown around a few times, but eventually in the mail I got a demo from the band, fronted by the infamous Blue who is also in New England slam band Dysentery. I put off reviewing it for about a month due to being too busy with class, but here it is.

This album begins in a very Gortuary-ish way with slams intertwined with more serpentine and weaving technical riffs. Nothing new, but solid, and with GREAT production. After a few measures, the band launches into an almost-epic (a-la Inveracity) riff and then...drops it. Back to the slamming, straight up guttural chugging brutality, and another shift to the sort-of-epic here and there, but it's very inconsistent. The solo eventually shows up and is gone just as quickly as it came, a frenzied shredfest but lacking anything very interesting. The song really becomes something else around 2 minutes, which is odd considering it doesn't end for another half minute. It feels like they should have expanded on the ideas in the last 30 seconds of the song in ANOTHER song, but they don't and it feels disjointed. Regardless, the song is fun and catchy (and slammy, of course), and just short enough to be effective if it's not criticized or approached too scientifically.

The 2nd song is a bit frustrating with pinch harmonics done in a sort of unsatisfying way, and the vocals are a little weak. The breakdown around 1:25 is incongruous but works out well by the time it gets going due to the cool time signature they use. Once again, weak vocals kinda mar this one, but the solo makes up for it with a muuuuch better lead pattern, of course frenzied and with much aplomb, all jerking yet confident and for this it is good. The outro-slam is pretty damn good, and could be improved with an extended outro sort of deal.

Track 3, "Stabwound Symmetry" is very good right off the bat with catchy riffs and great connections between Malignancy-esque riff wizardry and the slammier, simpler side of things. The slam section around 45 seconds is good but dissolves too quickly and gets kind of lost in poor songwriting choices such as "let's randomly do some technical leadwork because everyone is doing that" and the "breakdown punctuated by bad pinch harmonic use". Good thing after that they decide to slam decently well for a couple seconds before going off the handle with more uninteresting stuff.

The last track is kind of surprising, definitely get a Dripping vibe (if you remember "Prelude To The Fallen" on their debut album, which is a classical guitar piece), though this is an adaptation of Fernando Sor's "Etude In B Minor" really out of place and doesn't have quite the contrast Dripping pull off which makes their acoustic piece such a creepy and disquieting piece.

This band has a long, long way to go to the "top" of the slam echelon, and keeping with the idea that a lot of the MA-area brutal death bands are a little under-par (though with of course a fair deal of satisfying potential) that isn't to be taken as a slag to them personally. I can see this demo going either way; the band will either populate their music with sterile wankery like in the 3rd song and sign to Unique Leader or some other label that likes that stuff nowadays (no offense really, as I'm sure that'd be a good choice for them, and the new Decrepit Birth is cool) or they could go Gortuary and be mature, compositionally-adept songwriters (hopefully with better lyrics than that band though...please) with a lot to show for it.

But for now, it's a demo, enjoy it, and watch the band go where they go!

EDIT: I forgot to mention this because the CD was in my computer at the time, but, hot damn this is excellent packaging for a demo. Really good glossy J-card style insert with easy to read typefacing and great heat transferred pro-looking CD face. Gotta love when bands are dedicated enough to do GOOD demo design jobs. As a graphic designer myself, this is what I like. Extra points for that, bros.

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