On most days at this site I try to pull together a round-up of new music, album art, and/or news that most interested me over the preceding 24 hours. It’s usually in the range of 3-5 items, packaged together in one long post. Today, just for the hell of it, I’m spreading what interested me over the course of the whole day, one item at a time.
Yesterday I discovered Cleric. I discovered them because my eyes were drawn to the stupendous cover art by Jason Barnett that you see above, which accompanies their debut album, Gratum Inferno.
Cleric are based in Dallas, Texas, and are composed of members of Kill the Client, Baring Teeth, and Tyrannosorceress. But if you know the music of those other bands, prepare yourselves for something different.
I haven’t heard the entire album — only three songs are now streaming on Bandcamp — but what I’ve heard is truly impressive.
Based on those songs, Gratum Inferno will be delivering a stunning serving of Dismember-style Swedish death metal, but with some added ingredients. Not only will you hear that unmistakable chainsaw guitar tone and experience the familiar mix of jolting attacks and gruesome cemetery crawls, you’ll get swept up by some very nimble bass work and creative guitar leads.
The deep, jagged, voracious vocals are also exactly what you need from this kind of death metal, and the songwriting is top-shelf stuff. And the production quality? Very well-suited to this style of music.
If you think this brand of old-school death metal has been done to death, you should give this a try anyway. And if you’re like me and will never tire of this sound when it’s done well, then you will welcome Cleric with open arms.
I haven’t yet seen a release date for the album or any info about how to acquire it, but I’ll let you know when I do. For now, check out those three tracks from Cleric’s Bandcamp: