Shrek Death Thursday

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Only shooting stars BREEEEEEk the mowold

News:

  • Archspire goes fast. How fast? Check out this “Remote Tumor Seeker” playthrough and see for yourself.
  • Dubya recently pointed me towards Temple of Demigod, a nasty brutal tech death band that has a mighty promising release on the horizon. You’re likely going to be hearing more about these guys in the near future.
  • Atlas Entity has their new album streaming in full. Give that a listen, and check out last week’s review if you missed it.
  • If you’re looking for more fast shit, the new Vertigo Freeway has just what you need. Check out “Inpensi Omnia” and look for their self-titled album on July 16th.
  • Under the Pledge of Secrecy has some mad shit on the way, and you can get your first taste of it right here. I’ll be keeping an eye on these guys, so expect to hear more soon.

I spend a lot of time scouring Bandcamp for new tech death for you guys. Generally speaking, I like to look for bands that are doing something outside of the norm; finding bands who break genre conventions are exciting finds. If nothing else, bands that do more archetypal tech death really well have a good chance at earning a spotlight as well. And then there’s The Ogre Packet Slammers.

Rarely do I encounter a band so monumentally stupid that I have to talk about them, but Ogre Packet Slammers certainly fit that bill. Slam bands generally don’t create the most cerebral music to begin with, but Shrek slam? This is on a completely different level. Independent of the quality of the music, Giant Green Destruction is way too high-effort shitposting.

And as to the music- well, I never figured I’d get this much enjoyment out of songs about swamp incursions or Shrek’s green, turgid, pulsing member, but here we are. Despite the relatively clean production, TOPS go more on the brutal death metal side than the deathcore side of slam for the most part, mixing some pushed tremolo riffs and truly braindead breakdowns in equal measure. For all the nonsense at the heart of the music, the band actually knows how to write a decent song; there are some solid hooks here, and “Stay Out of My Swamp” in particular has some headbanging grooves. The only real dead spot on the album as far as I’m concerned was the “Good Morning Starshine” cover, but the rest was all knuckle-dragging goodness.

All of this said, at the risk of outing myself as a false™, I’m not terribly well-versed in slam; feel free to take all of this with a grain of salt. I did quite enjoy it, however; it’s good enough that it’s easy to forget that this is ostensibly a gimmick band, at least until you hit the Smash Mouth cover. I’m not going to pretend this is the greatest thing of all time, but if you want some good stupid fun, there are worse ways you could spend forty minutes.


Now, I understand that Shrek death is about the last thing some of you want to put into your ears, be it because of the music or the disgusting lyrics or what have you. Don’t worry; I’ve got you covered. Symbiotic is a band I’ve been meaning to cover for quite some time now, but haven’t really found an apt way of talking about them. Their Bandcamp description does it well enough; if you’re looking for something in the same vein as Obscura or Arkaik, this is absolutely going to be your jam.

While Symbiotic doesn’t really bring a whole lot of new ideas to the table, they’re one of those bands that falls into the “doing tech really well” category. The guitar work is exemplary, dancing across the fretboard in complex melodies and blazing solos. A couple clean sections work in tapped riffs akin to some of Beyond Creation’s material, and the variety of techniques used in the leads keeps them all from sounding interchangeable. They have a good sense of melody and pacing, too; the music is technical and progressive, but not so much so that it gets in the way of the songwriting. Tempo changes feel natural when they hit, and for every super fast part, there’s a break that lets you catch your breath. Malum In Se is extremely listenable, and it should be on every tech fan’s radar. Be sure to show these dudes some love on Facebook.


That’s all I’ve got for you this time. Hopefully you got some enjoyment out of this; if not, I promise next week’s offering will be a little less stupid. Probably. Until then,

Stay Shrek

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