You remember that blankie or teddy bear or giant horse cock you had when you were a kid that you wouldn’t let go of no matter how much your mommy begged for a turn? How you’d snuggle with it at night when you went to sleep and carry it around with you when you were running from bullies? It was warm and familiar and it just felt…right?
Well, that’s Flayed Disciple’s Death Hammer for me. It’s kinda old school but new school enough to avoid sounding so old school that you go “Oh, hey, another old school death metal band. Yah.” I’m assuming this is a result of their death-thrash sound (as the Wikipedia calls it). It’s familiar, but not trite. It hits that sweet spot that you didn’t even know you were missing and then massages that spot until you feel all warm and satisfied. All of this sounds like a horrible way to describe a death metal album, but this album is like a security blankie that demands blood sacrifice.
The first real, full song is called “Westboro Massacre” and it is littered with the holey (heh) corpses of the faithful. (To be honest, I have no idea exactly what the lyrics are, but the song ends with audio clips of screaming, punching flesh, and machine guns.) It’s a full steam ahead, let-me-rub-my-dick-and-awesome-solos-in-your-face monster of a track. The vocals are heavy and distorted and gravelly like a gangster Cookie Monster who’s been chugging napalm. They’ve strewn a few shorter solos throughout the song in addition to a longer one towards the end, so you don’t get the verse-chorus-verse-chorus-HOLY-SHIT-A-SOLO (non)surprise composition. (Though it does end up with quite a bit of soloing, but they are solos with more balls than wankery.)
The successive songs on the album keep up the speed and composition quality. And grooves. If you’re not headbanging and foottapping while you listen to this you’re either dead or in a coma because you headbanged so hard your brain popped out of your eye socket. They’ve successfully taken the thrash groove riffing and drumming (which I like), gotten rid of the thrash vocals (which annoy the shit out of me), added some modern death metal elements, and got a growler who sounds like he lives in the bottom of a well. Not because he has nowhere else to live, because, fuck you, he likes it closer to hell.
Now, this section of the review is gonna get a little weird. Based on the music, I was expecting a group of older/aging musicians who’d been at this for a few hundred decades and were just scraping by on integrity and crack cocaine. However, looking at their promo pictures, it seems more like they’re a young band (they’ve only been around since 2008) of fine young gentlemen. I only mention this, because they’ve done a great job of learning from their forbearers but still putting their own stamp on it. Like a giant rubber stamp of a zombie donkey with vampire fangs.
I have no intention of reviewing this whole thing track by track, especially since it’s a pretty uniform disc. That’s not to say there’s not variety in the songs—there are some slower sections dropped in around the middle of songs like “Feast in the Forest of Impaled Bodies”, but unlike a breakdown throwing a tantrum for attention, it works as a nice breather and lead-in to the subsequent solo. If you like one song, I think you’ll like the whole album.
This album seems to have been recorded under the directive “GO FASTER, OR THE ZOMBIE-ALIEN-ROBOTS ARE GOING TO RAPE OUR LEG STUMPS!” That’s something I approve of. This album doesn’t give a shit how tired you might be after working all day or going to school or whatever stupid shit you think gives you a good reason not to get the fuck up and headbang. It doesn’t care. It will literally (no, not literally) summon demons to come to your house and cut your toes off one by one if you don’t rampage through every room every time you listen to it. It’s not quite grindcore “fuckitall!!!” speed, because apparently Flayed Disciple doesn’t want to kill its whole fan-base through exhaustion. It’s the kind of speed you get when you’re late for an appointment, you’ve had five cups of coffee, and the highway is wide open without a cop in sight.
Get the fucking album when it comes out on May 28th. Also, if you pre-order it, it looks like they’ll send you a link with a free digital download. (Obviously. I’m a moron. What, are they gonna send you a free analogue download? Fuck.)
The first track publically available is “Interceptor.” Check it out on bandcamp: http://flayeddisciple.bandcamp.com/.
Links Galore Below!