Deathcore

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Deathcore, which emerged in the early 2000s, is a sub-genre of metalcore that fuses elements of hardcore punk and death metal. Deathcore is similar to metalcore musically, except it is generally heavier, with a stronger emphasis on blast beats, death metal growling vocals, and more intense breakdowns. The genre has enjoyed moderate popularity in the extreme metal scene.

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BORN OF OSIRIS The Discovery Album Cover The Discovery
BORN OF OSIRIS
4.12 | 17 ratings
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VEIL OF MAYA Eclipse Album Cover Eclipse
VEIL OF MAYA
4.15 | 7 ratings
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THE CONTORTIONIST Intrinsic Album Cover Intrinsic
THE CONTORTIONIST
4.09 | 8 ratings
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BORN OF OSIRIS A Higher Place Album Cover A Higher Place
BORN OF OSIRIS
3.95 | 11 ratings
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RINGS OF SATURN Embryonic Anomaly Album Cover Embryonic Anomaly
RINGS OF SATURN
4.00 | 6 ratings
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WHITECHAPEL The Valley Album Cover The Valley
WHITECHAPEL
4.17 | 3 ratings
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THY ART IS MURDER Hate Album Cover Hate
THY ART IS MURDER
4.00 | 5 ratings
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ALL SHALL PERISH Awaken the Dreamers Album Cover Awaken the Dreamers
ALL SHALL PERISH
3.88 | 4 ratings
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THE CONTORTIONIST Exoplanet Album Cover Exoplanet
THE CONTORTIONIST
3.80 | 6 ratings
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VEIL OF MAYA [id] Album Cover [id]
VEIL OF MAYA
3.75 | 4 ratings
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WHITECHAPEL A New Era of Corruption Album Cover A New Era of Corruption
WHITECHAPEL
3.65 | 6 ratings
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DESPISED ICON The Ills of Modern Man Album Cover The Ills of Modern Man
DESPISED ICON
3.57 | 3 ratings
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deathcore Music Reviews

FROZEN WATER BURIAL Frozen Water Burial

Demo · 2006 · Deathcore
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siLLy puPPy
The hybridization of metal styles is hardly anything new of course as it seems once a subgenre is created, there’s always someone blurring the lines however every once in a while there is a band that springs up in a far fetched location and fuses together metal styles that nobody else had thought of and for better or for worse goes for it.

FROZEN WATER BURIAL was a short-lived band that was formed in Greenfield, CA in 2006 and only lasted until 2009. The band that consisted of Paul (vocals), Nick (guitar), Heath (guitar), Joe (bass), Martin (drums), Juan (keyboards) and Erica (keyboard, 2006) only ever released this one demo simply titled DEMO in 2006 before disbanding in 2009. Supposedly they reformed but no album has ever seen the light of day.

While only a demo there are still six tracks that make the 26 minute mark so this is more like an EP than a demo. The band has made a name for itself in the underground for being one of the few bands that have mixed deathcore and symphonic black metal. Basically the guitar riffing and musical procession adopts the aggressiveness and of deathcore while the keyboards add atmospheric backdrops and aggressive runs that often interact with the extreme metal bombast.

Despite the extreme caustic abrasiveness of the delivery of frenetic guitar riffs, bantering bass and speed drumming, the music revolves around easily digested melodic processions. The vocals are all over the place with death metal growls taking precedence but there are lots of call and response stylistic approaches with core styled pig squeals and blood curdling screams. There are also deep guttural grunts and a few other surprises that pop up.

While the deathcore elements are predominant, there are also moments when neoclassical style guitar solos rip it up. There are few traces of black metal really except for the symphonic aspects and some of the guitar tones so the term blackened deathcore may apply but if you ask me i’d probably call this symphonic deathcore or even experimental. Overall the musicianship is top notch. The tempos are soaring at fast speeds and the guitarist is outstanding.

This is one of those bands like Children of Bodom that will rub many the wrong way. For true death metal fans this will be too cheesy and melodic but for those who are open minded and have no expectations then this is actually a decent set of tracks. It’s too bad the band didn’t stick it out and craft a more adventures album that explored more sonic textures in the production process because it’s apparent that the musicians were onto something and had a developed sense of creativity. For a demo this isn’t bad at all and personally i kinda like it.

A NIGHT IN TEXAS Invigoration

EP · 2013 · Deathcore
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siLLy puPPy
A NIGHT IN TEXAS is a deathcore band that started in Cairns, Australia in 2010 where it released an eponymously titled demo and soon after this first EP titled INVIGORATION which was released on Skull and Bones Records. This was the only release to feature Carlos Hicks on vocals before the band relocated to Brisbane in 2013 when Rheese Peters joined in as the new screaming fanatic.

INVIGORATION is a short EP that features five tracks that slink over the 16 minute mark but in that short timespan A NIGHT IN TEXAS crafts an intricate mix of explosive deathcore rage with technical death metal ingenuity. The title track starts off with an eerie atmosphere as if the album is going to be a dark ambient space album with gurgling synthesizer noises and creepy atmospheric soundtrack type sounds but quickly the tech death guitar gymnastics begin as do the guttural growly shouts explode onto the scene.

The second track “Throne Of Lies” is even much more bombastic as it unleashes the deathcore freneticism only with techy death time signature weirdness and exotic uses of silence and syncopation but doesn’t sacrifice the core principles despite the off-kilter approach. This EP was self-produced and self-released so there is a bit of a DIY feel to the whole thing but for the extremest examples of metal such as this, it’s actually not a bad thing. For a deathcore album this one is actually fairly interesting in how it keeps things interesting. The riffs are diverse and special attention is paid to create plenty of dynamic shifts.

On the surface A NIGHT IN TEXAS may sound like any other technically infused deathcore band but it’s always in the subtle effects that makes these kinds of bands a make it or break its affair for me. As for INVIGORATION, this is really decent slice of technical deathcore that excels in diversifying the guitar works and compositional fortitude. Perhaps the vocals could’ve been a bit more varied as all as like many deathcore bands there is a call and response between two different registers of puky growls and higher goblin monster vocals. There are some nice atmospheric guitar moments as well that continue the eerie ambience of the opening moments. Not OMG brilliant but a really good debut.

RINGS OF SATURN Gidim

Album · 2019 · Deathcore
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Kev Rowland
The alien themed tech-death metalheads are back with their fifth album, which according to guitarist Lucas Mann is a return to the roots of their second and third albums, namely ‘DIngir’ (2012) and ‘Lugal El Kin’ (2014). Having not heard any of their music prior to this, it’s difficult for me to comment, but I guess this is therefore quite different to their last album ‘Ultu Ulla’. Musically, the only thing I am really sure of with this is that the note density is off the scale as they mix technical death metal with mathcore and djent and then keep making it go faster. It is incredibly complex, and there are times when the blastbeats surely are not being generated by human feet. There is also a great deal of palm muting going on and the result is something which is incredibly staccato and sounds at times almost like something being put together by the likes of Dik Mik as opposed to guitarists.

It is brutal, and they slow it down at times just so they can impress us all with their incredible speed at the end. It is an interesting album, but it doesn’t contain the harmony and cohesiveness of many speed merchants and there is certainly a feeling that at times they are doing it just because they can as opposed to where it makes musical sense. It is as if Nile and Protest The Hero had a child, and then they went into a studio and were raised with an electro background. There isn’t any electro within it, but some of the sounds being generated and the approach is often more at home in that field that in the metal one. It is interesting, and the musicians involved are obviously highly skilled indeed, but in many ways, this is hard to listen to as it is often technically brilliant as opposed to musically so.

FIT FOR AN AUTOPSY The Sea Of Tragic Beasts

Album · 2019 · Deathcore
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Kev Rowland
It has been quite a while since I last heard American deathcore act Fit For An Autopsy, and it looks as if it is only guitarists Will Putney and Pat Sheridan who have stayed the course since 2011’s debut ‘The Process of Human Extermination’. However, they are now back with their fifth release, and the second with the same line-up. When asked about the title song, Putney said, "We have to be these puffed up, aggressive people to survive in this world, it's dog eat dog shit out there. Lyrically, the song touches on that violent way of thinking, but it also shows the inherent sadness that comes along with a life of this nature. It's the two main themes that the subject matter on our album was born from, making it a fitting title track. Musically, I think it's a cool display of everything we do as a band — some classic metal foundations with some new tricks for us, and a fight riff for good measure. Hope you enjoy it!"

The same could be true of the whole album, as this is a relentless assault on the senses, and although they slow it down at times that is only so they can come back harder and faster next time around. This is deathcore, a band full of aggression and pissed off hate combined with metalcore breakdowns. “Unloved” may provide some respite from the full-on attack, but while there is always a need for dynamics, songs such as these don’t really work. It is when everyone is stood firm and attacking the world while singer Joe Badolato spits venom that they come alive. The atmospheric bits don’t work for a band like this, which is all about sweat and energy. It is the more death metal parts of this band that really work, and although this is enjoyable, it would be more interesting to me personally if they moved more into that area.

RINGS OF SATURN Embryonic Anomaly

Album · 2010 · Deathcore
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siLLy puPPy
Deathcore is an interesting subgenre of extreme metal that mixes death metal guitar riffs and blastbeats with metalcore breakdowns and was inspired by the ferocity of early brutal death metal bands like Suffocation and Dying Fetus but took things up a few notches. While bands like Antagony and Despised Ion got the ball rolling in the early 2000s, it was only a matter of time before these types of acts started to hybridize with other genres including progressive rock and lo and behold, it didn’t take long at all for bands like Veil of Maya and Born of Osiris to crank out some bonafide progressive deathcore however they weren’t the only game in town and there have been quite a few bands to emerge in their wake.

One such band is RINGS OF SATURN that formed in the San Francisco / Oakland / San Jose suburb of Dublin, CA in 2009 as a studio only project by Lucas Mann (guitar, bass, keyboards), Brent Silletto (drums) and Peter Pawlak on vocals who were only ages 16 to 18 and still in high school at this point. While the band would expand its lineup, it was this core trio who wrote and recorded this debut album EMBRYONIC ANOMALY which emerged the following year. This debut, the only album to feature Pawlak on vocals before his departure pretty much set the stage for the band’s growing popularity in this field of extreme metal. With lyrics based on extraterrestrial life and outer space, RINGS OF SATURN crafted a unique hybridization of deathcore and progressive metal along with the more astute virtuosic wizardry associated with technical death metal.

While many such deathcore albums can be a noisy affair which is what true metalheads like them for, more often than not many bands can also fall into the sea of mediocrity with no redeeming features to help them stand out from the excessive crowded club. No such case with RINGS OF SATURN on EMBRYONIC ANOMALY as this band found a few ways of standing out from the getgo. While the band cranks out all the expected death metal rampaging guitar riffs with incessant blastbeats bantering away along with beastly guttural growls, these guys also make ample use of silence with staccato palm muted riffing as well as technical soloing and angular time signature assaults that add a touch of brutal prog to the already caustic metal ambush. There are also moments of jazzy interludes that bring tech jazz-metal wizards like Atheist to mind at key moments but mostly these guys manage to weave a noisy tapestry of dissonant deathcore angst with enough varying elements to make this is pleasant experience for my ears.

At times this band has some seriously mathcore-ish chops and remind me of Psyopus with guitar wizardry whizzing up and down the fretboard while other times guitar stomps punctuated by silence offer brief moments of reflection on the incessant stampede of freneticism that sounds impressive considering this is a mere trio of high school kids! Many of the neoclassical guitar solos mixed with the death metal aspects reminds me a bit of Necrophagist but the metalcore breakdowns keep this from sputtering out in that direction. I’m impressed by Pawlak’s vocals as well as he manages to venture beyond the one-dimensionality of guttural growls and provides some serious screams that have some octave range. There are a few atmospheric moments that make use of the keys but mostly this is a metal moshpit inducing eruption of energetic overflow. Deathcore is one of those styles of metal that you either love or hate and by adding progressive elements may make some hate it even more but i’m quite impressed with this debut by RINGS OF SATURN as it has a dizzying display of youthful angst with the unexpected depth of more seasoned professionals.

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