(This is DGR‘s extensive review of the debut album by the multi-national band Mithridatum, recently released by Willowtip Records.)
Mithridatum are a new death metal trio that are part of a much larger musical wave taking place within the metal scene. Over recent years the concept of a dissonant death metal band has been a slow-growing sub-section of an already fractured and widely spread subgenre of metal to begin with. Reflective of the large motions in the quest for the nebulous ‘heavy’, many artists have found new vitality in making some of the ugliest and most unapproachable music out there, where a listener can recognize the barest components but otherwise spend just as much time fighting to find the appeal in any of it, or having the music actively reject the idea of approachability.
There’s so much incredibly cool stuff happening within the spinning vortex of sound that emanates from Mithridatum but you’re just as often subjected to nightmarish sonic hellscapes as best as the band could write them. Fascinating? Yes. Friendly? Not a chance in hell. Harrowing may be one of the more apt titles out there for the five songs and thirty-five minutes of music on the group’s first full-length release.