Slaying The Life
posted on 11/2007 By:
Fans of Sabbat and other thrash/black hybrids, take notice--Slaying The Life is a seriously destructive album. Bestial Mockery (who are now, unfortunately, split-up) take old-school thrash riffage and channel it through the blasphemous energy and subtle melodic inclinations of raw BM to create some of the most satisfyingly evil metal you’re likely to hear this year. While the feel of this album is decidedly throwback, the band avoids the “revival tag” with a take on black metal and thrash that sounds fresh while still bringing to mind the greatness of bands like Deströyer 666 and the aforementioned Sabbat.
From the first few notes of opener “Slaughter Mass” right on to the album’s conclusion, Bestial Mockery ditch all pretense and restraint and simply pummel the listener with a maelstrom of brutal riffing, blasting drums, and toxic vocal work. The opening riff and subsequent thrashing of “Scream For War” could be straight off Morbid Tales, and “Apocalypse Prayer” sees the band smoothly transition from grim tremolo segments to face-ripping thrash without a hitch before arriving at a surprisingly melodic and distinctive guitar solo. This skill at adeptly melding the various aspects of their sound into a cohesive whole is what’s most impressive to me about Slaying The Life; despite the rare semi-awkward transition, everything that Bestial Mockery throws at you sounds perfectly appropriate and in place in the context of the album. I can’t really recall any “What the fuck where they thinking?!” moments in my experience with Slaying, and that’s because this outfit knows exactly what they want to play and how they want to play it--the mark of a talented, experienced band. Vocalist Master Motorsåg’s odes to Satan and violence are some of the most entertaining aspects of this disc, and it's clear that this guy is very serious about getting the subtler nuances (read: more Satan and violence) of the lyrical content across to the listener; the album‘s lone interlude, “Funeral Pyre,” is nothing more than a simple marching drum beat and a delightfully ridiculous vocal tirade that brings me back to the unforgettable intro to A Blaze In The Northern Sky. “Storm Of The Beast” and “Infantry Storm” are just two examples of the surprisingly good choruses found throughout the album, and Master Motorsåg’s style is intelligible and natural-sounding enough to ensure his venomous screams and growls will stay with you after the album is over.
The production is suitably raw and caustic and the instrumentation, especially the drums, is gritty and focused and has that slight air of intentional sloppiness to it which only serves to add to the careening, over-the-top feel of the album. Basically, all the pieces are in place for a great extreme metal release, and it's damn refreshing to hear a modern band take so much pride in sounding so completely…well, metal. Slaying The Life is an extremely intense and catchy recording that positively drips with the confidence and enthusiasm that makes our music so great in the first place. If you are looking for progressive, “difficult” black metal with philosophical lyrics and ten-minute songs, avoid this like the plague. If you are looking for a raw, ass-kicking metal album that never lets up and holds nothing back, buy this album and get into Bestial Mockery.
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