"Scourge of the Formless Breed"

by Thor

Italy’s masters of brutality, Septycal Gorge return with “Scourge of the Formless Breed,” the band’s first album in five years.

I’ve known of these guys since their inception, but “Scourge of the Formless Breed” is my first opportunity to really give them a proper listening to and if this relatively small sample size is representative of their entire catalog, Septycal Gorge is fantastic.  They play brutal death metal, but with a refined approach that blends primitive, American-style brutality with some old school sensibilities and a bit of tech.  This is all given a high-production-quality presentation resulting in an album that sounds incredible through the gamut of stereos and listening devices.

Their approach to song writing is to consistently deliver copious amounts of catchiness, but creatively enough to not alienate the virtuoso wanks out there.  They employ a nice balance of blast beats and grooves that are comprised of tremolo picked riffs over halftime beats that feature fast double bass.  So the grooves have a texture that bestows them with an abundance of technically proficient musicality.  In laymen’s terms, Septycal Gorge can fucking shred, but that’s not really the objective.  They intercut this tempo dynamic with unique passages that usually feature staccato, start-stop rhythms and exotic chording.  The overall effect is some of the most listenable and least boring conventional death metal I’ve heard in a long time.

“Scourge of the Formless Breed” is good from start to finish, but if I had to pick a couple highlights, they’d include “Urizen – The Burning Sun,” “Anabasis Paralysis,” and “Deeds of Eternity.”  This album should appeal to fans of bands like Deeds of Flesh, Decrepit Birth, and Inveracity.  Good stuff, all around.