31 October 2011
by Amit Sharma
Chances are if you are reading this you will have a good idea of what heavy metal is. You may have noticed how many bands out there describe themselves as “F**K-OFF HEAVY”…and yet when you hear their music this is far from the case. The Rotted are a band that actually do live up to expectation, and we’ll bet anyone you know that has seen them will testify the very same.
Interestingly, the opening track on the album, ‘Anarchogram Sun’, could be the least heavy on the album, at least in the traditional sense. It’s still the same volatile band though the riffs lend more towards their crustier D-Beat influences, and explore a different kind of filth. ‘Rex Oblivione’ picks up the pace with the usual blastbeat carnage you’d expect and some melodic death riffery on par with Gothenburg’s finest. In terms of production, this band have never sounded more destructive thanks to the skills of Russ Russell (Napalm Death, The Wildhearts, etc.). This record feels louder than its predecessor, with more low-end punch and high-end sparkle that carefully manages to avoid the risk of sounding too polished or of cheapening that signature grit.
‘Surrounded By Skulls’ follows very much in suit and could be the closest thing we have to a single off this record – which is a term rarely used within the realms of death metal. But then again this record feels less ‘death’ than its predecessor. Following the departure of ex-Cradle Of Filth gunslinger Gian Pyres in 2009, The Rotted seem to have honed in on their punk influences towards a more simplified cocktail for brutality. Obviously functioning as a four piece has left their music less layered and arguably less technical, but it’s great to hear a band that have actually been creative with change and used it to their advantage. This newer sound is tighter, more focused and ultimately – more identifiable. And most importantly, it’s still heavy as fuck.
Watch Thrash Hits TV: The Rotted @ Bloodstock Open Air 2011:
Songs like ‘Non-Serviam’ and ‘Apathy In The UK’ sound more like Sepultura than Cannibal Corpse, yet without compromising on the intensity one would expect from The Rotted. It has to be said the bass sound on this record is colossal, and manages to fill out a lot of the space needed to make single-guitar driven music sound massive. Whilst their debut effort, Get Dead Or Die Trying, didn’t completely harness the sheer ferocity of The Rotted’s live performances, Ad Nauseam looks set to show everyone what this band are truly capable of.
Sounds Like: Motörhead snorting speed with Sepultura and At The Gates
Top Tracks: Just Add Nauseam, The House Of Bedlam
Guitar Solo Rating: 1/6 It’s a riffathon, not a widdlefest