Blasphemer is a 5-piece band from Milan, Italy. The band came into existence in 1998, but because of years of “drinking and fucking around” (their words), they didn’t buckle down and release a full-length album until 2008’s On the Inexistence of God (which was produced by Stefano Morabito at 16th Cellar Studio, who has done similar work for Hour of Penance and Fleshgod Apocalypse). They’ve also now recently released a 5-song EP on Comatose Music called Devouring Deception that includes a remastered version of a previously released single (“Cloaca of Iniquity”), a cover of a song by Broken Hope (“I Am God”), and three new original songs.
Principally on the evidence of the 2008 LP, Blasphemer seems to get categorized with bands like Severed Savior, Deeds of Flesh, and Defeated Sanity under the banner of Brutal Death Metal. The Marco Hasmann cover art of the EP (which you’ll see after the jump) points in that same direction — a winged monstrosity admiring his handiwork after eviscerating a voluptuously nude angel.
Some brutal-death aficionados might continue to classify the EP under that banner, but we hear something a little different. Yes, the music is like a horde of army ants cascading through your brain with pincers snapping voraciously — but with choreography. The sound as we hear it is a bit closer to Fleshgod Apocalypse than likes of Deeds of Flesh usually deliver, and as most of you long-time readers know, that’s high praise here at NCS. (more after the jump, including a Blasphemer song . . .)
Blasphemer’s music is more about rhythm than melody, and the rhythms are taut and hurtling. Speed is the name of the game. The drums boil a stew of blast-beats and double-kicks, spiced with crashing cymbals, in an overflowing cauldron of heated magma. The guitars worship at the altar of technical death metal in a ritual of darting pulses and dizzying fretwork. The bass rhythms are just as nimble but keep this machine on course with massive slamming grooves.
Unlike slam metal or much of what passes for brutal death, however, Blasphemer doesn’t include breakdowns or slower-paced segments. It’s all acceleration, all the time. Their motto might as well be, “We will rest when we’re dead.”
The vocals are also more varied than the brutal-death norm — possibly because four of the five band members contribute to the vocals, and between them, they’ve got the range of death-metal vocalization pretty well covered. The dominant vocals are deep, bestial howls, but blood-curdling shrieks hit the top end of the scale, and truly scary gurgling growls scrape the low end. Sometimes all the vocalists sing together, and it sounds like the gates of hell have finally been triumphantly flung open.
Lyrically, Blasphemer also departs from the drenched-in-gore motif that characterizes a lot of brutal death. True to their name, the songs are uniformly focused on a vehement denial of the existence of God, of any life after death, of any truth in the teachings of any church, of any hope for salvation beyond what we can deliver with our own hands.
In Devouring Deception, you won’t find the injections of infectious melody that distinguish Fleshgod Apocalypse, or Defeated Sanity’s surprising bursts of jazz-style riffing and drumwork, but if you’re in the mood to be submerged in an adrenaline flood of technically impressive death metal, Blasphemer is worth checking out.
Here’s the one song on the EP that does include melodic guitar leads, and of course it’s that cover of “I Am God”. We’ve found that amping the volume to ear-bleeding levels is the best way to listen.
In addition to the five songs described above, the EP includes a video of performance footage and assorted other images accompanying the song “Kuru” from the previous album.
Devouring Deception can be ordered from Deep Send Records. The previous LP is available on iTunes, Amazon, and elsewhere. For more info about Blasphemer, here are links to their MySpace page and their Facebook page.
As we noted, the EP cover art is by Marco Hasmann, who has also created covers for the two releases by Fleshgod Apocalypse as well as albums by Vomit the Soul, Kadaver, and many others.
Songs not half bad. The cover art for the EP is outstanding. I have their first album and it was pretty good. I didn’t realize they went with a 4 pronged vocal attack, but I like it.
I enjoy a decent breakdown just as much as you do, but it’s nice to see some one just keep the tempo going as a change of pace.
I am listening to their Myspace page right now, and the two songs they have posted off of the new EP are better than I Am God.
Definitley gonna pick this one up.
“…keep the tempo going as a change of pace”. You contradict yourself mate!
I know what you mean though 😉
About the music itself: I like it, but I’m never a big fan of the homo-erotically (that’s a synonym for very in this case) fast blast beats in Brutal Death. Though I respect the drummers’ efforts, there are only a few bands that manage to pull it off without it distracting from the music. Vital Remains being one of those few. In this particular case, I feel the guitars, and music in general, could have been so much more without the blasts. Admittedly though, on I Am God it isn’t half as “bad” as on some of their previous stuff.
Thanks for pointing out the contradiction. Going back and re-reading that sentence makes my brain hurt. But I am glad you got my point.
I thought you might like this one. I guess I should have just jettisoned that effort to include a little melody in the selection and gone with “Revealed Fraud” or “Let Him Bleed”. We don’t need no stinkin’ melody!
Speaking of melody, I don’t know how you feel about symphonic metal, but I was looking up some bands that I haven’t read anything about in a while (Zonaria) and stumbled across this band that was on tour with Dark Forest last spring.
I think they fall right on the edge between gothic and black metal, with lots of orchestration and synths. The drumming runs the gauntlet from blast beats to simple rock beats. The guitar work is very solid. The vocals are almost pure black metal howls, which fits the mood their music paints. All in all, I was pretty impressed with them. This is not my usual cup of tea, but the music just reached out and knocked me silly.
Anyway, the name of the band is Carach Angren, and according to their myspace page the name means Iron Jaws.
Here is their myspace link
Excellent recommendation! I really like this!
Indeed they are a great band. Dutch 😉
I was waiting for you to notice!
Thanks for this recommendation. I love me so pure, straight up brutal death. Especially of the atheist variety.
Just out of curiosity, do you have a link back thing with amazon? Like if we click a link to the Amazon MP3 page, you get a bit of change for the link? (Am I making any goddamn sense???)
Yeah, I know what you mean, but we don’t have any arrangement like that. So far, we’ve intentionally been running this blog without ads or any other arrangements that generate money through links or otherwise. Explaining why would make us sound self-righteous, so we’ll just leave it at that.
I totally respect that, and I think it’s less self righteous and more how things SHOULD be run…but if you did have such an arrangement, I wanted to make sure you were getting paid.