Monday, January 6, 2014

the zombies are here: Down from the Wound (Philippines): "Violence and the Macabre” (Comatose Music)

Down from the Wound (Philippines): "Violence and the Macabre” (Comatose Music)
Absorbing this intransigent repugnance leads me to believe that in the category of “top brutal death metal” albums in 2014 will be Down from the Wound, miscreants with a rather nice little resume of recorded output starting in 2005, including several splits, a full-length album, and various demos. Now they are dropping this whopping new album called “Violence and the Macabre” that drives a fugly fracas straight to the circle pit of zombies, wrangles them into a sweaty session of moshing that can only end in one of two ways: either the bloody zombies limp back to their caves or they leave on stretchers, with their fellow zombies helping them to the hospital. Have your phone handy because you will need to call the emergency room to tell them that you’ll be rolling in soon, passed out from exhaustion.
Really, only the deities of the zombie world know what possessed these pinch-harmonics obsessed deathsters to construct such a microphone-cupping, breakdown wielding, guttural gurgling, blasting monstrosity. Throughout the almost 50 minutes of “Violence and the Macabre,” Down from the Wound reaches for inhumanly fast speeds in drumming, but because they do not want for the drummer to drop dead from all the blasting, they balance the hyperactivity with the heaviest grooves and breakdowns that they could muster. In the process, the overall feeling is grotesque hideousness that will attract only the slam/blast death metal zealots-trainhoppers who long to hear bands that want to eat Behemoth and Cannibal Corpse for lunch.
I have been listening to this album for weeks now and it just gets more appalling with every listen. The guitar work builds an impenetrable fortress of chugging massiveness in which anything resembling a melody will never sneak inside. You might find a quickie guitar “solo” here and there, but that immediately gets devoured by pinch harmonics and chugging. These breakdowns are simply irresistible and you will instinctively start throwing your elbows around, or at the very least, you will do the Frank Mullen handquake.
Of course, the cynics will criticize Down from the Wound for the usual: nothing remotely “original” going on in this album. Here’s the thing about that particular matter, though: these guys could not care less about such criticism. “Song” after “song” clearly shows that the band’s priorities are elsewhere: heaviness, slamming, chugging, gurgling, cupping the microphone, and blasting. Having fun with this horrendous sound, without any pretensions that this is mindboggling artist wizardry.
Anyway, kids, now go tell your friends that the party has already started, and bring some doughnuts!

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