The old school cut and paste photo collage style cover art on Full of Hell’s Rudiments of Mutilation is a somewhat misleading visual representation of the sonic devastation found within. Not to say the randomness, deformity and disease depicted is any different than the caustic mix of doom, grind and noise though. No, the cover betrays how artful Full of Hell can be. But I have a feeling that is all part of the plan.
The album starts with ‘Dichotomy’. If listening on headphones it feels “off” at first. Like you didn’t plug the cord in all the way. This rights itself as the track builds with a grating feedback-type noise, ranting demonic yelling and random percussion. Then we’re thrown pell-mell in the abrasive ‘Vessel Deserted’. This is the first of many tracks in which balls out aggression conflicts with heaving doom-influenced “riffs”. ‘Vessel’ itself sees frantic grindpunk bookending lumbering riffs heavy enough to shake your fragile mind to its foundations. That kind of confrontation occurs between songs as well. The trio of ‘Coven of the Larynx’, ‘Throbbing Lung Fiber’, and ‘Indigence And Guilt’ will have you cowering in the face of their velocity and shear corrosiveness while the longer tracks like ‘Embrace’, ‘The Lord is My Light’ and ‘In Contempt Of Life’ take the low road towards discomfort. Slow and doomy, with a lo-fi, static laced tone, paranoia sets in on the later half of the album. The sustained notes and distant blackened shrieks will raise the hair on your neck. When in doom mode each leaden note feels like a wrecking ball to the sternum, taking the breath away.
Full Of Hell use feedback and weird electronoise as weapons of terror. Their devilish presence can shock the listener into a frozen state only to be blown apart by the next onslaught of explosive energy. Full of Hell’s ability to create moods on Rudiments may be their greatest strength. At first, the Jekyll and Hyde transformations from overt outward aggression to oppressive despondency are entirely unpredictable. But, the content begs repeated listens to the point that the whiplash effect is a welcome slap in the face.
As primal and extroverted as Rudiments is the artfulness behind the aggression shines through. There aren’t many hooks to speak of (except for those tearing into your skin) but you’ll nonetheless find yourself enveloped by it. The album feels like the aural expression of a soul, albeit a very dark one. As always, the final interpretation lies with the beholder. How you finally feel about Rudiments Of Mutilation is up to you but this is no superficial record. It’s meant to be absorbed and integrated, felt and consumed. It’s anything and everything. Except ignored.