Release DetailsLABEL This Dark Reign
RELEASED ON 6/8/2004
Occlused In Ottusity
posted on 3/2005 By:
Doing a little research on a band can pay off. Not only in finding out that some incredible grind comes out of Italy, but that one of their members is actually a comic book artist for Marvel. Unfortunately, other information on the band is rather scarce. We received this CD for review fairly late after it's release date, which usually annoys me as it ends up being something that deserves to be buried forever. In Balatonizer's case, however, I'm just left wondering why this never received a worthy amount of acclaim and attention when it first came out? Occlused in Ottusity, if you couldn't tell by the title, is absurd and even goofy, but it's also explosive, violent, and incredibly enjoyable.
What can I say, really? It's drum-machine death/grind, chock full of quirky samples, that struggles greatly with the concept of variance and change without being something it isn't. Fairly primitive, but still highly complex at times, their songs range from a full-on fury to a mid-pace, all while using sudden tempo changes to pave the way for their most intense material. Spliced with plenty of dissonance, they excel particularly in setting up their dizzying riffs and tight musicianship. Don't get the wrong impression though, while they could be compared to Gigantic Brain in regards to their vehement and unusual delivery and choice of rhythm, I'm able to state that Balatonizer is just slightly more normal. "Caimme" is the first memorable track on the album, beginning with a sample and a repetitive synth riff with a style and charm that The Berzerker would kill to have. The Italian trio also uses an ample array of discordant climbs while balancing them with their adamant blasts, like on "C.E.P." Even though the deep growls and throat-shredding higher gargles sound great, I'd love to hear some thick yells incorporated into a few tracks. The production is also somewhat love/hate thing for me. While the instrument levels all comfortably recorded, there's a lot of aspects like speaker shifts and low-fi parts bass parts that I'm divided by. I can't necessarily decide if I think it adds fantastically to the album or just becomes tedious and distracting. No matter though, as when you hear the bizarre spectacle of a song like "Microscopic Brain", with the random insertion of artificial harmonics, or the unrelenting attack of "Reborn In Ignorance" backed by horror-movie sounding keyboards, you'll forget whatever technical gripes you have with the sound and just lose yourself in some highly entertaining, proficient, and furious grindcore.
In a world plagued by sub-par grind bands with poorly programmed drum machines, Balatonizer pull an Al Bundy by grabbing the entire genre by the belt and throw them out the door. I highly recommend Occlused in Ottusity to any bloodthirsty fan of inhuman and unforgiving brutal death metal who hasn't lost their sense of humor amidst all the pictures of botched surgeries and construction accidents that line the inlets of their favorite bands.
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