CD Review: Dying Fetus- “The Wrong One To F*ck With”

Five years have passed since death/grindcore veterans Dying Fetus released Reign Supreme in 2012. Well, the lapse in time certainly has not dulled the group’s aggression or musical precision. Dying Fetus’s newest release, The Wrong One To F*ck With, is a solid fusion of technical death metal, grindcore and groove. Shredding guitars and chaotic drumming open the record before settling in to a signature hardcore groove on “Fixated On Devastation.” It is classic Dying Fetus as the band seamlessly changes rhythm while vocalist John Gallagher’s guttural vocals could wake the dead. “Panic Amongst The Heard” is a frantic track with its-stop start rhythms and explosive midsection of blast beats. Dying Fetus are masters of containing chaos and playing on the fringes without falling off. John’s guitar work takes center stage as he shoots riff after riff over Trey Williams’ tight percussion. “Die With Integrity” is a thrash inspired monster that does not relent. The sinister midsection is hypnotic as the guitar and drums circle the listener in before being destroyed by devastating blast beats. “Seething With Disdain” is a merciless heavy hitter with stellar lead work and ferocious drumming. The trio proving yet again how to properly combine virtuosity and brutality.

 

Wrong One is a record that requires repeated listening to hear everything going on in each track. There are so many riffs and drum beats that one will miss during the initial listen. One will be so preoccupied with the brutality of a track that they will miss an interesting guitar phrase. The production is fine with heavy emphasis on the rhythm and lead guitars. Still, one can hear the complex song structures just fine.

Dying Fetus bring the bloody goods on Wrong One To F*ck With. Fans of the band’s previous releases can expect the technical yet grooving death metal the group is known for. Whoever or whatever did “f” with the guys in Fetus certainly lit creative fire in their heads. This is a band that will stop at nothing in order to conquer the extreme metal world.

For news and tour dates, check out the band’s Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/DyingFetus/

CD Review: ‘Akroasis’ by Obscura

Obscura’s fourth record, Akroasis, is a metal mindtrip. The long awaited follow up to the critically acclaimed Omnivium, is a progressive musical journey of death metal, jazz and classical. The seven minute long “Sermon of the Seven Suns” is a metallic roller coaster with numerous twists and turns. “The Monist” is a hermetic cut, with its arabesque baseline and grinding guitar riffs. The guitar lead forces its way through the musical collage like a space vessel escaping a black hole. There is so much going on that the listener is pulled in several directions, yet the song is cohesive. The title track is a musical tour de force due to its fast paced nature and virtuosity. The word “akroasis” is Greek and means “hearing or listening.” Well, listening to this track, one can hear the elation the German quartet derives from playing. The band showcases its thrash roots again on “Ten Sephiroth” with its pulsating drums and jazzy basslines. This is one of the more accessible tracks on the record, based on its straight-forward structure. The sludging “Ode to the Sun” recalls mid-period Morbid Angel with its lava riffs. Obscura is not riffing off Trey Azagthoth’s legendary band, but rather paying homage.

 

The musicianship is extremely strong on this record. This is not surprising as numerous talented musicans have played in Obscura. However, Akroasis has amazing songs not pieces of musical showmanship. The band plays well together and each member knows when to show off and when to relent. This mutual respect makes the record interesting because you do not know what the band will do next. Production wise, it is a bit tinny at times and I wish the production was meatier. However, it does not overshadow the stellar songwriting or musicianship on this album.

Well after five years, Obscura has not lost a single step. The band retains its spot as one of metal’s most technical acts and continues to set the bar. Akroasis is a challenging record, but an enjoyable one. Technical death metal bands will have to push a little harder when Obscura keeps releasing albums like this. This is a good thing as bands will continue to push the envelope in extreme music. Give this one a listen.

For news and tour dates check out the band’s website: https://www.realmofobscura.com/