Mar 222019


(Here’s Andy Synn‘s review of the new album by the British Columbia death metal band Gomorrah, which is being released today.)

While I definitely could have written about this album long before now (seeing as how the band’s representatives were kind enough to send me an early promo copy on request), I decided to wait until today to publish my review as I wanted everyone reading it to be able to listen to (and, ideally, purchase) the full record straight away.

Because while I can’t guarantee that all our readers are going to fall in love with Gomorrah (the band and/or the album) as much as I have, chances are that the band’s bombastic, blast-tastic brand of high-yield, high-octane Death Metal will appeal to an extremely wide cross-section of our regular audience.



The reason I’m so confident about this is that Gomorrah (aka the duo of Bowen Matheson and Jeff Bryan) are in possession of a sound made up of multiple strands of deadly DNA drawn from across the Death Metal spectrum, all carefully synthesised into an incredibly unique, yet also instantly recognisable, monstrosity that’s best enjoyed at maximum volume.

Just within the first few songs you’ll experience a barrage of speed and brutality that recalls Hour of Penance and Blood Red Throne, a twist of technicality and melody reminiscent of Man Must Die and Cattle Decapitation, and an incisive intensity which should appeal to fans of both latter-day Aborted and early Whitechapel alike, along with a host of other elements and embellishments (particularly a strikingly atmospheric aspect) all designed to get your blood pumping and your neurons sparking.

And yet, despite all this liberal name-dropping, there’s never a moment where the duo don’t sound like a distinct, and effortlessly devastating, entity.

It helps, of course, that while Matheson handles all the guitars and Bryan vomits forth fire and brimstone behind the mic, the drums on this release are provided by infamous uber-drummer Hannes Grossmann.

And while there are undoubtedly a handful of other, similarly skilful, drummers who could have delivered the same speed and power, Grossmann’s willingness to play around with the material in a more creative fashion (both Matheson and Bryan have gone on record to state that Grossmann was essentially given free rein to compose and perform his own parts in addition to acting as the album’s primary producer) elevates every single track to a whole other level.

Another point in the album’s favour is that, despite the relatively succinct length of the tracks involved (the longest of which, doom-laden closer “Of Ghosts and the Grave”, still doesn’t even break the four-minute mark), each one still manages to pack in a shocking amount of hooks and heaviness, aggression and atmosphere, melody and technicality, without ever feeling rushed or over-stuffed, something which stands as a clear testament to the pair’s increasingly impressive and sharp songwriting skills.

As virulent and visceral as it is confident and cerebral, Gomorrah may well be the archetypal Death Metal album for the modern-day misanthrope.

But don’t just take my word for it, check it out for yourself!




  11 Responses to “GOMORRAH: “GOMORRAH””

  1. Hannes is really nailing this to the wall! Fantastic mix of thrashy, techy, brutal metal! This is a must have and the review is spot on about what sounds this hits. Just a bit of core can be a good thing!

  2. Thanks guy! I bought, Bandcamp strikes again…goddamned good Death Metal. This year is looking real good! Your review was a perfect setup for this! Lovin it!

  3. Sorry, I just can’t get past the misogynistic cover art.

    • Why do you think it is misogynistic? (Serious question). Do you think imagery like that is inherently so or are you ascribing some particular intent to it?

      Without context, it seems an odd comment to make.

    • Virtue signalling. Don’t imagine you’re going to win any SJW brownie points here.

  4. I like the songwriting, the drums, the vocals, but the guitars really hit a weird nerve for me, and I’m not sure what it is. I like the guitar playing, but the actual tone/sound is a really strange “highs, lows, no mids” electronic-y sound. There’s something really synthetic about the distortion.

    Maybe they love it and thats what they were going for (and it does shine through whenever he gets some feedback/palm mutes because it’s a really strange sound), but otherwise it sorta grates on me

    Maybe I should give it more time, because otherwise I really enjoy this

  5. @WeldGuy:

    I don’t accuse Gomorrah themselves of misogyny, but I’m tired of seeing trussed up women in album art (and videos) for bands. I might well like the music itself, but I think they’ve made a bad choice in the art. The fact that she’s an attractive white woman gives me the feeling that there’s a sexual element to having this as the cover even though the lyrics indicate this is metaphoric. Just seems exploitative.

    • Why is it necessarily misogynistic to have an image of a “trussed up woman”? Even if there is sexual element to it why is that exploitative? There’s nothing wrong with sex or sexual imagery.

    • The problem is you are imposing a metric ton of your own interpretation on top of the art. There are plenty of album covers that give you all the context you need (especially within the gore/brutal scene) and leave little room for a concept.

      But this? It’s a pretty strange image with a weird mix of elements and at least IMO does not provide an immediate context, so to call this imagery inherently misogynist is REALLY stretching pretty far.

      And I am even someone that would likely lean towards your views in some ways- but regardless of that- I think it’s good that we maintain a few things that are ignored these days: nuance, context, the idea of “art” in general and how it can be purposely self-contradictory, the fact that obscure or surreal images are up to interpretation, that intent matters.

      It’s like me saying a movie that has a domestic violence scene in it is a misogynistic movie – without context that makes zero sense.

      • let’s discuss the art. if it’s a willful blasphemy – which the tired, and conceptually flawed image of the inverted cross typically infers – there is a woman incorporated into it.

        the image of the Christ on the cross is a symbol of reverence, an reminder of the profundity of his supposed love for humanity (and perhaps more compelling to the secular minded, taking your word to your death). to invert the cross and to bypass Peter is to bluntly reject Christian tenants, and I feel confident that this is typically in response to repressive tendencies and interpersonal injustices associated with the illogics of faith. sexual repression is a particularly sensitive vein, allowing ‘perverted’ sexual imagery a potent perturbial capacity in this context of blasphemy.

        women have traditionally carried much of the weight of sexual symbolism throughout art history, and believe it or not, progressives, feminists, etc do not necessarily take issue with that role except in noting that it’s not gender exclusive, and that the celebration of predatory and abusive attitudes be corrected by an appeal to your own capacity to understand the concept of representation.

        I personally think Gomorrah wanted a surreal, potently clean looking image of blasphemy, and accidentally/not accidentally crucified a woman in an era where people want to devote their interest to folks who are willing to consider these things.

        Gratuitous tits are sometimes nothing more than gratuitous tits. I don’t think Gomorrah expected this to be an issue for them, and really, it probably won’t be. But I do have a couple sharp words – first, that it’s uncreative, and this is not some great wonder. In my experience, talented musicians sometimes can’t see for shit; if it’s not a sound, it is not necessarily their game. secondly, that if they did think this through, and wanted us to come to the end of the thought only to find “uh, yeah we crucified woman, fuck you!” then I don’t accept that, and will not partake and move on.

        levelling no accusations

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