Enduring The Massacre
Siege Of Amida Records
03 May 2010
by Tom Dare
Dyscarnate are a death metal band. Saying that feels slightly strange – every other new band who incorporate “death metal” into their genre name seem to want it prefixed by “brutal symphonic progressive technical ambient blackened”, and definitely don’t want you to call them “deathcore” no matter how many hardcore breakdowns they have. It’s something of a relief to find something as straight-up death metal as this. It’s also part of the reason their debut record Enduring The Massacre is so good, and why this is a band to be genuinely excited about.
This could almost be a blueprint for aspiring death metal bands to follow. Dyscarnate have gone about crafting their first release in exactly the right way, obviously concentrating purely on songwriting. The result is a collection of eight top-notch death metal songs constructed from great riffs, punishing baselines and drum parts that genuinely add have something to say musically as well as bringing bags of groove and crushing heaviness. And it all works brilliantly.
Obviously influenced by Dying Fetus and Behemoth, the angular, groove-laden riffs create the kind of sinister sonic violence that feels like the world collapsing in fire and falling rock, while the groove fills you with all the feeling of immense power you need to survive the cataclysm. The scathing vocals enunciate the apocalyptic visage with both percussive roars from guitarist Tom Whitty and ear-splitting shrieks from bassist Henry Bates, almost delivering a call to arms with tremendous senses of vocal rhythm and evocatively vicious tones.
Listening to Enduring The Massacre is an exhilarating experience in and of itself, but it also throws into light the mistakes many young death metal bands make – because Dyscarnate effortlessly avoid them. Rather than an obsession with being more brutal and more technical than everyone else (something which, in recent years, has sometimes led to dull records that completely fail to stick in the memory) they focus on making the music great. If the best riff is simple (at least by death metal standards), they stick with that rather than showing off how fast they can play, how quickly they can headbang and how well endowed they are. This is a band confident in the size of their chops wanting to show off how good their music is, not getting waylaid in a confusing whirlwind of penis envy towards Karl Sanders.
Rather than falling into the trap of using hardcore breakdowns as the only method varying the pace, Dyscarnate use a more traditional method. The slower passages are still very much death metal, complete with all the riffing heaviness that was the norm before Job For A Cowboy bored more people than any death metal band has the right to. The effect of this is to make the tracks more cohesive and continually interesting than many of their peers while still being as heavy as Ed Force One with Cult Of Luna blaring out of the cockpit.
Watch a Behind-The-Scenes video from the recording of Enduring The Massacre:
Having already thrilled with their debut, Dyscarnate can now do whatever they like. By focusing on songwriting, all avenues remain open to them, something that would not be the case had they gone down a folk prog tech-core route. Whether they go off in a different direction or stick to playing orthodox death metal, on the evidence of Enduring The Massacre, they’ve got the ability to deliver.
Sounds like: Dying Fetus, Behemoth
Top tracks: Extinguishing The Face Of Heaven, Yielding The Iron Fist, Enduring The Massacre
Dyscarnate- Enduring The Massacre tracklisting:
An Axe To Grind
Despised & Disgraced
Extinguishing The Face Of Heaven
Yielding The Iron Fist
The Vitruvian Plan
Those Who Trespass Against Us
Enduring The Massacre