Premiere: Marginal have spotted some Barbarians
And they’d like you to know about it.“Unadulterated grindcore is hard to come by,” says Transcending Obscurity‘s description of Marginal. I’m gonna go ahead and agree, not just because they provided me with an intro, but because there really seem to be too many bands who think sheer, unfettered aggression is all that a grind record needs. 56 30-second-intervals of blast beats and squealing guitars are not enough, however, as the gents in Marginal are all too happy to prove. We, in turn, are happy to premiere “Barbarians”, the opener of their forthcoming full-length Total Destruction.
See? Not a blast beat or unnecessary shriek in sight, yet you can’t deny that this is a bit of a banger. There’s that catchy af riff that the song keeps coming back to, an unexpected flare of a guitar solo, and then we’re treated to singer Johan’s gruff, slightly guttural bark that wouldn’t be out of place on a classically-inclined death metal track – which to me makes it all the more welcome here. Change things up a bit for the (also catchy af) chorus and throw in some pounding drums, and presto – you’ve never banged your head so hard while getting hit with a sack of bricks.
Total Destruction is rooted firmly in the traditions of the grind and crust scene’s grandfathers, yet boasting a modern sound, and never too lazy to go the extra mile to give everything that extra bit of staying power. It achieves this by putting purpose above blunt force: pulling classical elements only where serviceable instead of blindly aping the pioneers, and not being afraid to occasionally toss in riffs or parts that peers might eschew in favour of more relentless shredding. Yet it never feels like the intensity drops off, which makes for an album that sounds equally angry and interesting.
See for your own ears over on the Bandcamp page. Three more tracks are streaming right now, and both digital and physical versions will be available there on December 15th.