When I started this site almost five years ago I picked the name “NO CLEAN SINGING” not so much to announce a rigid rule we intended to follow about the site’s content but more as a protest against something that had happened to the music of one band I used to care a lot about — Bury Your Dead. Matt Bruso had left the band to teach school and he had been replaced by Myke Terry, who introduced clean singing into their music, and the music just seemed to lose some of its weight all the way around.
Even though my musical tastes have evolved in increasingly extreme directions and I’ve lost touch with a lot of what’s happening in whatever scene is left of the one BYD inhabited, I still keep the early BYD albums in my car and I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of them.
So, when a Facebook friend recently posted a link to a brand new EP named Weightbearer by a Spanish band named Dremenuart and made comparisons to the”über-low-tuned hardcore metal” of bands like early BYD, that pushed the right button and I had to check it out. I’m so very glad I did.
Weightbearer is loaded with largely atonal, brutally percussive music. The guitar is tuned so low it sounds like a bass, the bass sounds like a giant pile-driving machine, and the drums explode like a heavy-artillery barrage. Altogether the band resembles some massive, piston-driven, industrial-strength apparatus whose mission is to dismantle the human skeleton, breaking it into pieces at the joints and then smashing the remnants into splinters.
The lead-guitar riffs operate mainly to ratchet the tension, needling and pulsating until the heavy start-stop pneumatics bring the payoff with a shitload of hulk smash. Every now and then, the band take a break from the methodical pile-driving and bolt into a romping rhythm or inject a burst of skittering electronic noise, but in the main this is all about the beatdown, with breakdowns that thankfully aren’t telegraphed from a mile away. And the DIY production is spot-on for this kind of music: everything sounds powerful, completely in sync, and heavy as girders.
Of course, there is no clean singing, just a lot of very good, very pissed-off vocal ferocity, from scathing howls to hollow roars to ravenous growls. Just what the doctor ordered.
No molds were broken in the making of this EP, and I admit that nostalgia may have a lot to do with how much I like it, but if you’re in the mood for a dose of concentrated, well-executed skull-fracturing, check this out.
The EP consists of seven tracks, with five featuring the band’s new vocalist Enrique Rivas and two bonus tracks that were released in February as a single. Weightbearer is a “name your own price” download at Bandcamp, but it can also be downloaded for free via this Mediafire link.