The Spanish multi-instrumentalist and vocalist JM Dopico has put his talents to good use on a small mountain of releases by almost two dozen bands since the early ’90s, including records by Machetazo, Dishammer, and Bodybag, as well as session work. But he now has a solo project in which he’s given himself free rein to mix and match beloved genre influences — “the darkest Heavy Metal, Doom Rock, and Punk from the glorious ’80s” — and the results are damned good, the kind of music that electrifies the pulse rate and poses a high risk of sore-neck syndrome.
Dopi has named this new project Premature Burial. On the debut album, entitled Antihuman, he pulls from influences that range from Black Sabbath to Celtic Frost, from Motörhead to Voivod, from Saint Vitus to Mercyful Fate, from Obsessed to Venom, Carnivore, and Amebix. To keep it real, he recorded everything live in the studio, with no triggers on his drumkit and no cut-and-paste pro-tool tricks. He did have outstanding help from virtuoso guitarist and music teacher Óscar Dafonte, who recorded all the solos on the album (which are spectacular), but otherwise Premature Burial is his baby.
I got hooked hard by the first song released for public streaming from Antihuman, “Back To Zero”. The hard-driving opening riff and the surging, rocking drum beat of the track are geared toward immediate head-movement, while Dopi‘s vicious, bestial growls give it a very sinister edge. As the music keeps surging, it bestows upon us a dose of classic heavy metal gold, a screaming, boiling solo, and basically a three-and-a-half-minute headbang orgy. It’s also virally infectious.
Now you can check out a second song from Antihuman, at the end of this very post, before the album’s release by Selfmadegod Records on May 17th. “Creator Destroyer” is another sure-fire adrenaline trigger, propelled by vibrant, head-hammering drums and a rumbling bass. It’s a fiery and defiant creation, and also a destroyer. Blaring chords and jumping notes create a feeling of savage, triumphant energy, but the interweaving of gloomy, ominous sequences lend a different dimension to the sound as well.
Having become addicted to “Back To Sero”, I was eagerly waiting for two more things, and got both in this track: some heavy, rhythmic pounding sequences providing sustenance for a hungry headbanger, and a glorious, shrieking fret-burner of a solo from Sr. Dafonte, which goes off like a fireworks display. There also aren’t many voices that sound like Dopi’s, and his thoroughly ferocious, gritty, throaty bellows add one more element of feral power to hell of a good song (venting lyrics that are evocative of supernatural events).
Antihuman features cover art by Nor Prego, and additional guitar work by Francisco Liaño. The album was also recorded, mixed and mastered by Francisco Liaño at Treboada Studio. As noted, it will be released by Selfmadegod Records on May 17nd. Pre-order info and other details are available via the links below.