"Severing Humanity"

by Dr. Abner Mality

Ultra-brutal "slam" death metal is not one of my favorite sub-genres to wallow in...too monotonous, not catchy enough, ultimately exhausting...but like anything else, there is always an exception to the rule and Deadly Remains are one of those. These guys do it right.

Unlike many slam albums, this is really well produced, with every instrument standing out. Instead of being buried in a sea of mud, the bass is very decipherable and even dominates the guitars on occasion. Check out the opening to "Cosmic Necrosis" for an absolutely sick four-string workout. Every slam fan is hungry for total brutality and believe me, you get it here...opening cut "Apocalyptic Birth" is almost too much to take: an onslaught of raging insanity, ultra-guttural slurred vocals and an avalanche of drumming. That's the pattern adhered to for most of the rest of the album, but there are noticeable differences between the tracks and an attempt is made to mix up tempos. Deathcore style breakdowns are eschewed, thank God, but there are definitely slower, stomping sections. "Human Trafficking" is one of the best examples of that.

At the end of the day, though, the usual pitfalls of slam death metal begin to show...the mushy vocals go in one ear and out the other leaving no impression, relentless brutality wearies the ear is pretty hard to do a truly outstanding album in this style. But Deadly Remains are ahead of 90% of their brethern and they deliver 38 minutes of sonic hell. Promising debut, hope they can build on it and transcend themselves.