Sunday, January 23, 2011

Gory Delivery - Conceived to Prevail (Permeated Records; 2010)

Because I write this blog (and because I like the music) I try to listen to as many new brutal/slam death metal albums as possible especially towards the end of the year. Of course, for a variety of reasons some albums just slip through the cracks. Gory Delivery's Conceived to Prevail was one of those albums. I think someone over at the Ultimate Metal forums told me about the album, but I forgot about it until the commenter zetasimo mentioned it on my Top 10 post.

I'm really glad he (she?) did because Conceived to Prevail is an excellent album. It doesn't reach the heights of the years' best, but it is one of those solidly good albums that I thought 2010 lacked. Sure, one album doesn't completely reverse a trend, but it's nice to be pleasantly surprised by an album.

Gory Delivery are from the Basque Country in northern Spain and share a drummer with Cerebral Effusion, who are also from the same region. Gory Delivery definitely share some of Cerebral Effusion's raucous energy and punishing technicality. However, I'd say Gory Delivery sound even more like bands from the highly regarded Italian scene, like Septycal Gorge, Blasphemer, and Vomit the Soul. Backing up my point, this album was mastered in Rome, and the cover art is by Marco Hassman, who has done cover art for the three aforementioned bands.

One thing all those Italian bands do well is balancing interesting technical riffs with pure heaviness. Gory Delivery fit right in here, and are equally skilled at slamming and teching. In this way, both sides are better. The slams are sharpened with technical bursts, which are then made stronger by the slams. Gory Delivery even throw a few good solos in, including a harmonized, Judas Priest-esque one. Not something a band can pull off in every song, but once an album is fun.

As I said earlier, this album is solidly good. What that means is that it has no flaws, but isn't as inspired or innovative as the best albums of the genre. Considering that there are usually only one to three of those innovative and inspired albums a year, I think that is pretty good praise. If you can't get enough of the music coming out of Southern Europe these days, then you will love this album.

Additional Note: Give the band some credit for coming up with a unique (albeit a little silly) sounding name with "Gore" in it. I thought that well had gone dry a while ago.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Ancient Necropsy Music Video

Ivan Jaramillo, the mastermind behind Ancient Necropsy, has released a music video for his song "Ghosts of Death Valley". This guy is amazingly good at guitar and drums. There are a couple other similar videos at his myspace. Check it out:

Friday, January 7, 2011

Brutal/Slam Death Metal Top 10 2010

I know I'm a little late, but here is my list for 2010's best albums.

1. Defeated Sanity - Chapters of Repugnance
There was no question in my mind that this album would be number one. It has everything that makes brutal death metal great. Musicianship, songwriting, brutality, groove. I can't say enough good things. Defeated Sanity proved themselves this year as one of the best bands currently making music.

2. Goretrade - Mistaken Conception
Another veteran band upping their considerable game on their third album. As I said in my review, Mistaken Conception effortlessly mixes killer Colombian brutal death with old school touches, and create a style all their own. Amazing album.

3. Cenotaph - Putrescent Infectious Rabidity
I finally differ with Andy (slightly) with my pick for the third spot. Cenotaph have long been a favorite of mine, and this is their best full length in recent memory. Another album I reviewed, Putrescent Infectious Rabidity is a roller coaster ride of technical, smashing slams. Listening to this style a lot can leave you jaded to the extremity, but this album destroyed me, and that is exactly what I want.

4. Cerebral Effusion - Impulsive Psychopathic Acts
Back to agreeing with my co-blogger, this album was raw and heavy and truly earned the right to be called brutal. These Spaniards released a steamroller of an album.

5. Hour of Penance - Paradogma
I have long been a fan of the Italian BSDM scene, but I had never listened to Hour of Penance until this album. They had always seemed different somehow than their countrymen. However, where they do not differ is in quality. In terms of sheer scale and dare I say epicness, this album rocks. (review)

6. Vulvectomy - Post-Abortion Slut Fuck
This album came out all the way back in January 2010 and for some reason was not received well by a lot of people. Perhaps it was because Vulvectomy changed up their style, but whatever it was this album was controversial. Regardless, I am a big fan of this album. It lacks the same naive charm that marked their first album, but made up for it by having some seriously groovy slams. Best album title of the year as well. (review)

7. Gortuary - Awakening Pestilent Beings
The most slamming band from California, Gortuary released a very good, but under appreciated album in my opinion. This album had great slams, great vocals, and surprisingly great guitar solos. I like it when bands doing something out of the ordinary while staying true to the genre, so I like this album. (review)

8. Pathology - Legacy of the Ancients
I haven't gotten around to reviewing this yet, but I was impressed by this album. Pathology somehow got signed to Victory Records (home of of a great deal of shitty metalcore), but did not lose any of their edge. I can't say this album blew my mind, but I think that is because Pathology have been so good for so long. I hope they continue to perform at this high level and I hope that being signed to a (relatively) major label does good things for the band.

9. Short Bus Pile Up - Repulsive Display of Human Upholstery
Short Bus Pile Up are simple band, but they are so good at what they do that it's hard not to like them. The slams are standard but the execution and energy are exceptional. I agree with Andy completely when he says that this band has a lot of potential.

10. Gorevent - Worship Paganism
I liked this album a lot, but I have mixed feelings putting it on the top ten list. I have always felt with Gorevent that they were almost, but not quite, in the top tier. After thinking about it though, this is a good album that showcases Gorevent's ability to create ultra-heavy music. (review)

In general I felt that 2010 had a lot of great albums, a lot of flawed albums, and then not much in the middle. This is why I had some mixed feelings towards the end of the list. There just wasn't that totally solid album to round out the list. Still I think there were two legitimate brutal death metal classics released this year, and a couple more that were close to that status. I really can't ask for more than that.

I hope everyone's 2011 has started well. Keep reading, commenting, and listening, and of course STAY BRUTAL!!!!!


Monday, January 3, 2011

Godless Truth goes full-weird; new stuff sounds like Anata + Augury according to studio reports

Have a listen. I kind of like it, but it'll definitely be cool to check out in full! If anything, it'll probably be better than previous outings by the band which have been basically generic as hell.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Top Ten Brutal/Slam Death Albums: 2010

I may be mildly inebriated right now (in fact, I just spelled that "inebirated") but here's a quick rundown of my top ten in slam/brutal death for this past year. Overall, it was a mildly disappointing year in terms of follow-up albums for bands whose debuts were released fairly recently (last few years, I'd reckon), but several bands surprised with excellent new material, several new bands absolutely rocked the house with their sickening tones, and overall, I'd say there was a fair bit of choosing going on here; always a signal that the scene is alive and well.

As such, I look forward to 2011 as a harbinger of excellent slamming sickness. Slam 'til you cum, indeed.

1. Defeated Sanity - Chapters of Repugnance
DS ups the ante with some absolutely balls-out, ridiculously powerful slam on this one. An excellent show of strength compared to Psalms, which, in my opinion, was made ineffectual and somewhat listless by Jens' poor vocals, some horrid production choices and only decent-to-good songwriting; this is an entirely different beast. Every song offers up new ways to bludgeon your skull in, snaking around transitions and riff-changes with the greatest of ease. I don't really need to tell you why this rules, it's on the top of this list for a reason, so read my review of it if you need convincing, which you shouldn't. This speaks for itself. It quite literally skullfucks everything else "slam" from this year by a fair margin, and fuck you if you don't think so.

2. Goretrade - Mistaken Conception
This band really knows how to kick major ass, and surprisingly, they follow through on their ass-kicking stature throughout every single song, with no doubts about their awesomeness. This is literally an improvement on the Goretrade sound in every way. They've got two albums before this and if you listen to them in order you can quite honestly hear the progression. This is a band evolving outside of itself; Colombian sound? Fuck that, this is the Goretrade sound. Dominates. Worship or die.

3. Cephalic Impurity - Unique Brute Revival
Surprise! I fell in love with this album after about 10 listens; its grooves opened up more, lots of faster, double-time slam breakdowns amidst the controlled chaos. By paying attention to how the riffs flow, you can make out many interesting transitions; these nuances coupled with the grooves and overall (incredible) songwriting improvements from their last very average album leave me extremely satisfied. Sleeper hit of 2010, haters be damned.

Cerebral Effusion - Impulsive Psychopathic Acts
Another one I reviewed, this is a raucous display of absolutely dehumanized Spanish slam sickness. Uncaring, violent and very dangerous, this band barrels through 7 hymns of depravity in over 30 minutes(!) of their absolute best, most mature material yet. Think Colombia or the Philippines make the best inhuman, fucked up slam? Think again. Spain just schooled them in that regard; fucking ugly and repulsive shit...I love it.

5. Wormed - Quasineutrality
7 years after Planisphaerium, Wormed casually drops a new 2-track demo on the slam world; we all collectively shit ourselves because of what's in store. Though Phlegeton drums (admirably), and the excellent Andy C. is missing on the kit (though he has since been replaced by an excellent dude I posted a video of), these two songs are some serious shit full of complete next-level, logically progressive shit for the band. Gorguts influence? Check. Some seriously sick songwriting skills? Check. Slams galore? We're still kinda waiting on those, but there's enough brutality here to fill at least ten shitty slam bands' albums full of absolute insanity, so we'll take it. It's fucking Wormed, and they're back with an astrophysical vengeance.

6. Cenotaph - Putrescent Infectious Rabidity
Reincarnation In Gorextasy was alright, but this is the true return-to-form for these Turkish maniacs, led by the inimitable Batu Cetin. This time, they hired Defeated Sanity skinsman Lille Gruber and proceeded to bang out 9 songs of incredibly explicit perversion. Batu's brother Basar no longer performing with the band (for this album anyway), Cihar performed both the guitar and bass, making this the first slam power-trio in recent memory. This shit is intense, a hearkening back to the times of Pseudo Verminal Cadaverium in all of its fucked-up glory. Check out the last song; completely disturbing, amazing shit. I expect more of this from these masters of Turkish technical insanity.

Short Bus Pile Up - Repulsive Display Of Human Upholstery
SBPU are a fairly new slamming brutal band from Virginia of all places. I've been championing Tyler and the boys since the demo they solicited to me in '09, which had some minor problems, most of which were touched upon and made at least somewhat better on this, their first full-length offering. Barrett saw something in them just like I did, and put this out on his Sevared Records, and all went happily ever after. I even threatened the band that if they changed the snare sound, I'd disown them forever. They didn't change it. It's excellent, and so is this band. I sense a bright, slamming, guttural future for them. Catchy, somewhat serious and always the life of the party, SBPU will (hopefully!) continue to bludgeon the false with their trademark catchy palm-muting madness. Rage on, brothers.

8. Aborted Fetus - Fatal Dogmatic Damage
Yet another Russian sleeper hit. What's up with that? Oh, I don't know, other than the fact that this fucking rocks. A little Devourment worship here, some typical Russian breakdown-slam there, and we're off to the races; a fun little album chock full of surprises. So many snare fills that I dare you to try to keep track and count them before giving up and just headbanging until your neck is sore. Oh, and it's pretty atmospheric to boot. If this were the new sound of Russian slam, I wouldn't even be the slightest bit disappointed. High marks in almost every department; just wish it drew itself out a little more...same complaint on the SBPU, for the record.

9. Hour Of Penance - Paradogma
With every album, it feels like these guys slightly distance themselves from the "Italian brutal death metal" scene, but, regardless, this still feels somewhat entrenched in that aesthetic despite it being pretty much a very anti-religious Nile on Italian amphetamines. Perfectly written, perfectly orchestrated and immaculately played technical brutal deathgrind insanity of the highest and most rigorous order, you'd be hard-pressed to find something as professional coming out of any country currently operating under the banner of brutality. Every song is full of such seething hatred and detestation that it's almost palpable, and almost always very intimidating. As usual, I look forward to how this band pushes itself further. Every album has gone even further into realms of brutality not quite fully explored by any other similar band, and it will be exciting to follow the progress here. Buono, indeed.

10. Gorevent - Worship Paganism
Though I regard it as a mild sophomore slump for this off-kilter yet, ironically, completely orthodox Japanese band, this album still manages to hit me hard every time I listen to it. Something about it feels off; perhaps it is the not-quite-there-yet "darker" atmosphere that was attempted, perhaps it's the "sameness" to the previous album...maybe the atmosphere has been dimmed by the attempt to cement it firmly in a specific place? Not sure, but there's something barely-tangible that harms this album as a "full album" listen for me. Every song is completely trudging yet slightly faster (than the debut, anyway) slam with a bit of extra pep in the step, and an evil aesthetic/very nice artwork and layout (appreciated!!), but something about it holds it back from being as utterly devastating and ruthless as Abnormal Exaggeration. Maybe it's the lack of 40 second mid-album intro tracks...macabre shit, I want to see it reintroduced. Make it so, slamming samurai!

Have an excellent 2011; may the slam be with you...