Can someone precisely point out to me when the decision was made to return to the vintage death metal sound? First off, I am by no means complaining. If this wave of neo-Morrisound bands keeps pounding out albums like Extremity’s Coffin Birth (20 Buck Spin) you can park a tractor-trailer worth of those motherfuckers on my driveway. In just the span of a few years, we’ve gotten remarkable work from bands like Tomb Mold, Mortuous, Gruesome, Necrot, Gatecreeper and Horrendous by playing death metal like its 1991.
Extremity and bands of their ilk clearly have reexamined the classics from labels like Roadrunner, Combat and Nuclear Blast, but the sound hardly ever comes across as dated or rehashed. One of the measures that Extremity has employed is their complete embrace of varying song structures and speed. Mid-tempo and gnarly samples are suddenly traded for blast-beat volleys which then segue into thrash grooves. And while on the subject of the subgenre, Extremity’s other tool is their willingness to supplement the death with layers of doom, thrash and plenty of grind.
Extremity plays along with some Candlemass mood and leads early on ‘Grave Mistake’ but the blast beats and chugging guitars gun down any notion of atmosphere or contemplation. On the flipside, death metal grit and speed dominate the opening moments of ‘Coffin Birth/A Million Witches’ before taking a swan dive into doom/sludge laden swamps only to reemerge with galloping speed and coarse howls from Marissa Martinez-Hoadley and Shelby Lermo which will have you reaching for a bag of Halls. You know your band clearly has no fucks for rules when the grindcore chaos and beats of ‘Occision’ is the closest thing to staying in one musical lane.
So, have or will we figure out when the case was made to draw from the past in order move forward? I don’t know, but I certainly don’t want to leave this sweet spot.