INHUMAN disGRACE (2012)
England, Deepsend Records, Technical Brutal Death Metal
Like schoolchildren, the metal community loves to bicker over sub-sub genres. Clearly technical brutal death metal differs radically from brutal technical death metal, and therefore deserves as its own separate entity. Thrash/death vs. death/thrash, doom death, death doom, slamming brutal death metal, slam death metal, guttural slamming brutal death metal…
Even with all these microgenres, bands continue to release new albums that stump the most insistent of young genre-slingers. This becomes especially difficult when a band pigeonholed to one sub-sub genre releases a new album that embraces a new sound or influence. Some fans immediately jump ship. “The new album isn’t even slamming guttural alien razor metal anymore!” But hey, variety is the spice of life, right? Detrimentum’s new album INHUMAN disGRACE reminds listeners that change is good as it breaks typical sub-genre nomenclature and pulverizes the mediocre clones around it.
This British three piece’s past efforts rested more firmly in the Disgorge school of brutal death metal. I.E. it often involves frequent tempo changes, gurgling vocals, an emphasis on fast and loud snare drumming, and more, well, brutal lyrics and subject matter. With Detrimentum, we are left to a difficult task. INHUMAN disGRACE has not only technicality, but melody, progressive parts, and distinguishable lyrics? What can we possibly do?!
Progressive melodic technical brutal death metal? Perhaps this label can describe the longer, memorable, yet technical and dense songs. Maybe we need to include another adjective to say that the vocals aren’t gurgled. Unguttural progressive melodic technical brutal death metal. Wait, there are some black metal shrieks and Steve Powell of Anaal Nathrakh on drums… industrial blackened unguttural progressive melodic technical brutal death metal?
By now you surely get the point. Back to the brutal death metal via Fleshgrind classroom, Detrimentum’s previous record (2008’s Embracing This Deformity) was a quality record firmly entrenched in one sub-subgenre. But their latest album shows them embracing a variety of influences, resulting in an album that is still more brutal than a library of slasher films, yet diverse and memorable. Longer tracks like “Ascension” have airy moments reminiscent of Lykathea Aflame as well as brief robotic vocals like Cynic, while “Pestilence Shared with the Worms” showcases a new microgenre of progressive brutal death metal. “The Journeyman’s Lament” packs the variety of elements into one nice container topped with a ridiculously rigid and militant riff at the end. Although INHUMAN disGRACE is filled with new elements, the sheer heaviness and thickness of the guitar never let up.
Genre elitists should avoid this album because the difficulty of classification will result in a massive migraine. For everyone else, Detrimentum has evolved into a deadly amalgamation of metal once based in the camp of brutal death. Well done, gentlemen – INHUMAN disGRACE is a major victory in the name of forward progress.
Rating and one-line-metal-verdict:
7/10: INHUMAN disGRACE is ferocious and heavy, yet highly evolved and difficult to classify – a beast surely deserving of your time, and a steal at less than 8$ on amazon.com.
Band information and album art found at their website: detrimentum.co.uk