As we’re starting to get some beautiful spring weather breaking through the unusually brutal cold snap of Siberian blizzards, it seems the perfect time to cover this. Aborted Fetus‘ latest offering is truly a collection of subtle and tender musical movements. Or maybe that other thing. A sick, hulking slab of death metal grotesquery from the pit of carnal stench. Yes, it’s that second one. Ladies and gents, don’t be fooled by poetic titles such as Iron Petals Of The Blasphemer’s Pear. This is actually a reference to a medieval, genital torture device. Other tracks, such as Eaten By Pigs In The Trough and Beheaded On The Guilotine are a little more obvious and straight forward in their naming.
In all seriousness, this is, for the most part, an incredibly heavy record, with grinding gore and blood-slick grooves splattered across all surfaces. A vein of (hopefully) historical corporal and capital punishment carries throughout. It’s very effective in tying together what is a 100% death metal album, and giving it more character than simply being above par. The Russian group’s guitar lead work is of particular note, happy to twitch from eerie simplicity to blistering shred, and back again, without pity. In Cradle Of Revulsion this prevalence toward diversity, albeit within tight parameters, is engaged by the full band, and it makes a hook of the switch between dredging doom and blast beats. But yeah, it’s still instantly identifiable as death metal in every sense. There are a couple of moments of brief respite throughout the album, but these are nothing more than tormenting glimpses of the light outside, making the end result all the more final.
If you fancy getting your ears around a band who re-write the rules of old school DM, as if the last 20 years have been suppressed from their memory, The Ancient Spirits Of Decay is the next stop on your world wide dungeon tour.