Hey gang — it’s Bandcamp Friday! Let’s talk about death metal! Again!
Mors Verum – The Living (Total Dissonance Worship, 05 November 2021)
Well, it’s just about that time of year: all the major publications already have their year-end lists completely wrapped up and ready to hit newsstands — and meanwhile I sit here, scurrying to get through 80+ unopened zip files in my download folder and 300+ unread messages in my inbox, wondering yet again if I’ll ever see the light at the end of the tunnel by New Year’s. Spoiler alert: it probably won’t happen. Yet again.
But my policy has always been to check out everything that gets sent my way, to give everything I come across a fair chance — and for good reason. Otherwise I might completely miss out on underrated gems like the one I’m sharing with you today.
Today marks the release date for a five-track EP by a band from Canada I’ve never heard of, on a label that’s never made its way onto my radar before, but one that almost assuredly will be ranking somewhere in my top ten whenever I finally get that list put together. Hopefully sometime before Groundhog Day.
This was one that really sneaked up on me: listening to the first track “Inside” my curiosity was already extremely piqued, by the dissonant and detuned experimental blackened death sounds — very much reminiscent of Imperial Triumphant, but more like their first couple records that were much grittier and grimier and nastier than what they’ve been doing lately. A feeling that continues on throughout the remainder of the songs here.
But the moment I was absolutely hooked — and starting to visualize which of the items currently penciled into my work-in-progress year-end list might need shifted around a bit — was when that second track “Death’s” kicked in. (The track names of The Living EP, by the way, when read in order, are “Inside Death’s Womb Purge The Living.”) The way that series of bass notes rumble and echo against each other and cause such discordant harmonics — just like when you pound on the bass keys of an old piano.
I don’t have much more to say, other than just letting the music speak for itself (check out the video and the Bandcamp widget below), although in parting I would also like to share this thought from the band itself, which describes the sound more succinctly and perfectly than I’ve managed in the past several paragraphs: “Though the subject matter is grim, the music implores the listener to seek beauty in the vast emptiness of mortality.”
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