Viral Load/Putrid Pile Split

By Thor

I've been a Putrid Pile fan since Mr. Pile himself, Shaun LaCanne, handed me a demo CDR at a show in Milwaukee back in 2002.  I'd been a Mortician fan since the release of "House by the Cemetery" so drum-machine fueled death metal was nothing new to me but watching one guy completely obliterate everything in sight with some of the most brutal and slamming death metal  I'd ever heard was fucking mind-blowing. My band had to play immediately following Putrid Pile that day and by the time we took the stage, I was wrecked from spazzing out the entire previous hour. Shaun went on to release three full-length CD's, some sick splits and the rest is history.

There was always one name that kept popping up whenever I'd read anything on Putrid Pile. That name was Insidious Discrepancy, aka Shawn Whitaker aka Viral Load. This one man psycho has the goods. Viral Load is another formidably brutal explosion of slamming death metal and the perfect compliment to Putrid Pile's gory recipe. So a Viral Load/Putrid Pile split was destined to exist and thanks to Relapse Records, it does!

The aforementioned Viral Load/Putrid Pile split features three new songs from each "band" and the results are predictably fantastic.  The first three tracks are courtesy of Viral Load , including a cover of "Cod Piece Face", a Dead Horse tune. Whitaker's songs are tight, brutal and full of fist-balling, adrenaline-pumping slams.  Stylistically, Viral Load is a little less raw and visceral than Putrid Pile and a bit more conceptually focused as Whitaker's songs really convey a story and exude depravity. Putrid Pile's three songs are fast and furious. Depending on your stereo, they may literally mow you the fuck down. LaCanne's last Putrid Pile album featured a more streamlined sound, including an emphasis on speed and technicall guitar passages and less slamming. The songs on this split continue that progression in LaCanne's songwriting, and although I love the slams of early Putrid Pile, I credit LaCanne for evolving  in what is undeniably an explosive direction.

The Viral Load/Putrid Pile split is a must have for fans of either of these two performers as well as fans of Guttural Secrete, Devourment, Plerosis, and Cemetery Rapist. It's truly American death metal at its sickest!