Founded in 2006, Pulverized from Chile are yet another proof that the South American Extreme Metal scene is alive and well. After two demos, produced in 2010 and 2014 respectively, the band are releasing their first full-length record on October 13th, 2018. Showcasing Old School 90s Death Metal influences and lyrics in both Spanish and English, the record consists of six tracks with lengths varying between 3:37 and 8:35 minutes. Let’s give ‘Monuments of Misanthropy’ a spin!
The first track Devoción that is already available on Youtube starts off with considerable weight; unfortunately the somewhat one-dimensional and brassy drum sound with a clicking bass drum catches the ear instantly. The tom hits seem too foregrounding, whereas the cymbals can hardly be made out in the background. However, the riffs are tight with a nice and dirty, albeit too quiet, guitar sound that only gets more convincing volume in a howling and energetic solo.
Consumed by Ignorance starts off with a decent portion of eeriness: The vocals give a haunting echo as if in an underground vault, and soon the guitars and drums set in with a gloomy theme that successfully transitions into a melodic tapping solo. With less foregrounded toms, the drums integrate themselves into the overall sound landscape more successfully. Vile growls, especially the one indicating the transition into the second half of the track that boasts with more aggressive tempo, energy and searingly shrill guitar melodies.
In the Depths of Insanity instantly captivates with a simple yet energising rhythmic theme that profits from its repetition, and a heavy focus is laid on the beat and the vocals. With ease, we move into a more flowing passage with dark guitars that later develops into a groovy refrain that has neck-wrecking live potential with it’s meandering guitar passages. Overall, this song is a good mix of straight-forward brutality and nifty yet equally heavy melodic elements.
Next up is Cadáveres, starting with an epic question-answer game between drums and a heavy guitar melody that makes hungry for more. The following characteristic low riffs are unfortunately somewhat overpowered by the brassy drum sound again. A long low and mighty growl ends the first part of the song, and after a short silence we move into a slow headbang-inducing part, showcasing a slow staccato guitar in the background that creates a beautiful whole with a slow and menacing solo and slower drums that definitely appear more wholesome than in some previous passages. Towards the middle of the track it is easy to drift off a little, though, but a long scream wakes us up into more slow rhythmic goodness as heavy as lead, topped off perfectly with a guitar solo at the low end of the sound spectrum. This track dissolves the tension very slowly (quite literally) in the last one and a half minutes, and one could argue whether the slow trailing out adds to the track or not, especially as the fade-out at the very end is somewhat awkward and abrupt and does not quite seem to work with the long way that got us there.
Aniquilación Genetica is, again, off to a slow and epic start, this time with alternating guitars that shine with a dark and dirty sound on the one hand, and more resounding and space-claiming notes on the other hand. The vocals set with impressive weight and depth, and as soon as the drums set in we move into a captivating groove that is only amplified by well-calculated hits on the cymbals. Soon, the song builds up into more straight-forward hammering and shredding but we still get interesting variation in the form of menacing yet melodic solos and finding back to more substantial slowness in some parts again.
There is no slow beginning in the last track Profecía – Flagelo – Extinción – the first few bars are reminiscent of Old School Heavy Metal but after a surprising break we are thrown headfirst into blackened riffs and frantic drum hammering. Again, the latter would be more effective with a more well-rounded sound, but the impact is intense regardless. More melodic elements come in with a bit of a short slow-down, and the screams towards the end are extra vile. A bittersweet guitar sound and the perfection of the band’s signature move, an effective build-up of tension through rhythmic variation, amplifies the sense of anger, desolation and destructiveness.The blackened background riffs show a fantastic new sound facet on this record and round off the album with a bit of an aural treat.
All in all, this album is a feast for fans of American 90s Death metal and anyone who enjoys raw musical aggression and an interesting play with tempo and rhythm. The sound production could have done with a bit more complexity in some parts in order to really showcase the energetic potential of this record.
Pre-Order your copy of ‘Monuments Of Misanthropy’, out October 13th, HERE!