Blast Radius – March, 2012 (Part I)

Welcome to the March, 2012 edition of Blast Radius!  You may have noticed that I wrote part one in the title, and that is because this column will have two parts this month!  We have been receiving a good bit of interest from bands who are wanting their music to be featured in upcoming Blast Radius columns, and because I’m a swell guy who loves to support the underground, I will happily oblige them.  Let’s get back to focusing on this first installment, which will be completely filled to the brim with disgusting brutal death metal, as well as an interlude of hardcore punk thrown in for good measure.

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Artist: Gutfed
Album: Promo 2012
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Label: Unsigned

Guttural slamming brutal death metal.  This is what Gutfed does proudly.  Hailing from Istanbul, Gutfed is a three-piece act that seems to specialize in generally mid-paced slamming brutal death metal with sparring guttural vocalists.  They have provided me with this three-track demo, and for those of you who enjoy a good slam band, look no further than Gutfed.  There really isn’t a whole lot to distinguish them from most other slam bands, except for maybe the vocals, which are natural gutturals that lean more on the side of goregrind than anything else, and you know what?  I am perfectly okay with that.

Sometimes I am a man that loves to revel in the simplicity of things, and that is what Gutfed is able to satisfy in me; an appreciation for the simple things.  In a world of death metal where everybody is trying to be more technically thrilling and heavier (as well as sterilized and triggered), it’s very nice to see stuff like this existing, and the artists standing by their creation to the ends of the Earth.  With the groovy riffing, intricate cymbal work, and dual vocal attack in ‘Shredded Human Flesh Party’ your need for guttural mid-paced slam is met with great ferocity.  In the last third of the track ‘Anal Grenade Insertion’ the band decides to give a bit of speed, which was a nice change.  There’s also a small break in the music that just gives way to a very slow and rockin’ bass line that is very reminiscent of ‘Human’ by the German goregrind band, Gored.  The last track, ‘Cruel Acts Of Poser Punishment’ is more akin to the first track, but with some more dual gutturals working together on the same vocal cadences.  Gutfed are a new band, but they sure as hell satisfy that craving for a simple slam sound.  They are definitely for fans of Russian-styled slam like Katalepsy and older Abominable Putridity.

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Artist: Machete Dildo
Album: Demo
Location: Torrence, California
Label: Unsigned

Look at that cover.  Just look at it.  A machete and a dildo in the same place?  I know you can’t believe it, and neither can I.  Machete Dildo was brought to my attention by a lovely young woman who definitely has good taste when it comes to disgusting music that nobody except a few people (like myself) would clearly enjoy.  Machete Dildo absolutely fits into this column.  Self-described as a sloppy and wet goregrind band, Machete Dildo is a two-man operation with guitar, vocals, and a drum machine that is clearly abused in a good way.  Having very odd stage persona’s, custom made masks, gore, and sometimes an equally disturbing entourage of mental horrors, these two men want nothing more than to give you nightmare-inducing and brutal goregrind.

After digesting this three-track morsel multiple times, one would think that hailing from California would mean they tend to follow the same sound and styles as other brutal death metal and goregrind bands.  But, I have found there to be more of a correlation to Michigan-styled brutal death metal and goregrind, particularly in the vein of bands like Intestinal Alien Reflux, Syphilic, and Gutrot.  The frantic riffing and spastic drum machine with continuous non-pitch-shifted guttural vocals really gave me that impression, making it feel as if Brian Forgue and the Stiles brothers were at the helm of Machete Dildo.  The first two tracks, ‘Intestinal Debris’ and ‘Female Feces Consumption’ really drive that point home, in my humble opinion.  The third track, ‘Doorway Beyond Sanity,’ felt like a mixture of Inhume and Oxidised Razor, but obviously with more spastic guttural vocals being used.  Just to hear some of the sounds the vocalist makes is pretty crazy for it not being pitch-shifted.  While these ideas aren’t exactly new in their own way, Machete Dildo takes a usually simplistic brutal death metal/goregrind mixture and makes it as their own.  Combining that with their unique and energetic live performances I can see them carving themselves out a nice sliver in the niche that is guttural brutal death metal/goregrind.

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Artist: Iron Reagan
Album: Demo 2012
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Label: Unsigned

I told you there would be a hardcore punk interlude, didn’t I?  You all can thank Iron Reagan for that.  Comprised of members from Municipal Waste and Darkest Hour, Iron Reagan had set out to give their idea of what hardcore punk is, and unsurprisingly it sounds a hell of a lot like Cro-Mags, not that it’s a bad thing.  Obviously with a name like Iron Reagan and the cover of this demo, you’re going to hit on some political commentary, which given the type of music this is happens to be perfect subject matter.  So let’s go!

You are treated to 5 minutes of material on this demo, and boy does Iron Reagan make the most of it.  ‘Paycheck’ starts off with a relatively slow build brought forth by Ryan Parrish, but quickly does a kickflip into your teeth, with Phil “LandPhil” Hall pumping out sharp chords with Tony Foresta energetically belting his lyrical rage.  Paul Burnette is kind of in there, but I suspect that he is more just to keep the beat than anything else.  ‘Eat Shit And Live’ is a ferocious attack of hardcore punk, making you bang your head and pump your fist in the air.  ‘Artificial Saints’ seems to be slightly more controlled, and feels as if it were a b-side from “Hazardous Mutation.”  The last track, ‘Running Out Of Time’ seems like a healthy mixture of sing-a-long punk rock and crossover thrash, giving the demo a very strong ending.  I am definitely looking forward to future material from Iron Reagan, and I’m still a big fan of Municipal Waste and Cannabis Corpse that my taste for Hall’s and Foresta’s music will be greatly met.  Everybody should absolutely check out Iron Reagan if they love any type of aggressive punk or metal.  If you don’t, you’re really dumb.

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Artist: Welding Torture
Album: EP 2011
Location: Izmayl, Ukraine
Label: Sevared Records

This EP is not my first run-in with Welding Torture.  A few months back I happened to come across this video for the track ‘Three Victims For The Price Of One,’ which appears as the first song on this EP.  Besides the crab walking, I thought that Welding Torture had a very catchy and groovy brand of brutal death metal on their hands, and now with this EP in my possession, I am able to see if the rest of the music can stand up to my test.

As I mentioned above, Welding Torture play a very catchy and groovy brand of brutal death metal, combined with their semi-technical prowess and engaged song-writing abilities, the four tracks that are on this EP are ridiculously chock full of talent.  Musically, I can see a lot of similarity with Severed Savior, Gorgasm, and Viral Load, particularly in the drumming.  Speaking of Viral Load, I sometimes get the impression that Vladey is trying his best to impersonate Shawn Whitaker at times, as he does a low-bellowing growl and transitions into his gutturals pretty well.  Roman’s guitar tone and riffs are pretty standard fare for brutal death metal most of the time, but the way that he integrates many different techniques is what really catches my ear.  Victor’s bass-chops are right up front and center in the music, with the tone of his bass being really full and thick, giving the music a much-needed crunch.  Max’s drum work seems to be mainly focused on double bass and blastbeats, but he has a very diverse repertoire and is not afraid to show more intricate works, especially in ‘My Burden, Recycling Cancer Tumours, Like You’ and ‘Shout How Many Will Get.’  I was really blown away by what Welding Torture has recorded on this EP.  It is by no means anything original, but the way they play everything is unique to them.  A solid mixture of standard brutal death metal and slam.

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Well, that’s all I have for you guys in the beginning of this month!  In about two weeks there will be another installment of the Blast Radius, and there will even be a guest review done by one of the other writers, so please stay tuned.  I would like to thank Gutfed, Machete Dildo, Iron Reagan, and Welding Torture for putting out the music and letting me write my thoughts about it.  We here at Metal Blast will always support and love the Heavy Metal underground, and you should too.  See you all next time!

If you have or know of any bands who would like to have a demo, EP, or split album reviewed in this segment, then please contact Jon Burkan via e-mail at jonburkan [at] metalblast.net with their band name, album name, location, and label it is released under.