on 20 September 2011
The word "brutal" is often bandied about but rarely can an adjective be more fitting than in describing this debut album by the Glaswegian-four piece. This album, which has been re-released on Earache Records, falls somewhere in brutal death metal/grind territory, so don't expect anything less than an unrelenting aural assault.
The songwriting is very strong, and the time-signatures a relentless shifting delight. The bassist is allowed freedom to add his own flourishes to the madness, with slaps and pops aplenty, while drummer Allan MacDonald is quite simply astonishing, battering his kit to within an inch of it's life while remaining intricate and extremely fast. Extremely. The guitar tone is heavy but clear, technically adept but not irritatingly so. Plenty of chug and for a band this stupidly heavy, pretty damn catchy. It's rare to find a guitarist who can play this well and write material this strong.
Then come the vocals, donated by Dutch front-woman Som. Ignoring the fact that she is an under-represented female in music this extreme, frankly she can emit sounds so sub-human it borders on scary. From fantastic deep gutterals to pig-squeals (which are, for once, actually worth the effort) she runs the full gamut of extreme metal vocals without once sounding out of place. Immense.
Lyrically obscene, but with a grim, jet-black sense of humour running through the whole album, this has to rank as one of British metal's finest debut releases in many years. If they can retain this spectacularly high level then I can't wait to hear more.