Beaten to Death: Dødsfest!

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Beaten to Death: Dødsfest!
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Beaten to Death: Dodsfest!
Death Metal, Grindcore, Post-Hardcore
Mas-Kina Recordings
October 4th, 2013
Release length: 19:07
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Oslo, Norway’s Beaten to Death is a rather eccentric five-piece. While bassist Mika and guitarists Martin and Tommy don’t seem to have any other bands noted to them, drummer Christian “Bartender” is involved with Tsjuder, Umoral, and The Cumshots, and vocalist Anders is involved with She Said Destroy. Back in 2011, the group issued their debut album Xes and Strokes through Mas-Kina Recordings, which seems to be owned by the band since Beaten to Death appears to be the only act on the roster. With rave reviews from fans and critics alike, At Rockfeller was issued on DVD a year later, bridging the gap to the follow-up album, Dodsfest! this year. But, is this nineteen minute recording an experience, or is it nothing but overly sharpened noise?

While Dodsfest! is a relative short album, it is a surprisingly creative experience. “Vulpes Vulpes, Mustela Lutreola, Praedium” mixes some Grindcore elements with loud, sharp distortions one would find on a venomous Black Metal recording, especially on some of the melodic hooks that carry a great deal of emotion in a Post-Hardcore manner. While beautifully hostile, Beaten to Death aren’t afraid to throw some deeper, groove oriented Death Metal riffs or bass heavy breakdowns your way on this track, or many others. Another staple ends up the flow between songs, such as with the shift between this and “The Egg Thrower.” This cut is a far more abrasive performance that offers a little more technicality in some spots, but really spotlights the drums in a more aggressive manner than the blast beats captured on the infectious “Krepsekamp,” offering some dismal hooks with groove-laced Death Metal.

“Obliteration of Nekromantheon” carries that rougher exterior again, though it doesn’t quite work at the start. That sharper distortion becomes more of a twang during the Grindcore moments, though the Melodic Death Metal style riffs that come in later are pretty tight and do help to make the song stronger. Given the atmosphere, a deeper tuning would actually make this a rather haunting experience until the catchy groove and tighter music kicks in towards the end. “Vinni Butterfly” is a crushing mixture of Grindcore and Death Metal that immediately will have you banging your head against the stern, somewhat early Hardcore presence that can be felt in some of the bridges. But, the song that stands out the most is the more melodic and emotional “Dov, Dovere, Dod” thanks to that sharp distortion giving the guitars a natural analog vibe, setting a beautiful atmosphere that compliments the shouting vocals throughout.

Dodsfest! ends up a rather unique experience that doesn’t just jump from one style to another, but rather blurs the lines between them. The sharpness of Black Metal, the blunt edge of Death Metal, Grindcore blasting, some Metalcore hooks scattered about, and even some haunting atmospheric Post-Hardcore melodies, it’s all here in this nineteen minute performance, and it sounds fantastic. Sure, some songs aren’t quite as strong as others, but it isn’t so much each individual experience, but rather the entire journey thanks to how many songs seem to simply flow or slam into the next. Beaten to Death prove once more they are a band that deserves to be watched closely in this era of revival and carbon copying, presenting a follow-up that makes you want to grab a friend and just be carried away through the twistedly majestic aural landscapes that are Dodsfest!.

01. Vulpes Vulpes, Mustela Lutreola, Praedium – 1:5
02. The Egg Thrower – 1:50
03. Krepsekamp – 1:19
04. True Norwegian Internet Metal Warrior – 1:27
05. Dodsfest! – 1:14
06. Erik Og Skrik – 0:28
07. Dov, Dovere, Dod – 2:14
08. Oblieration of Nekromantheon – 2:03
09. Nazi Slippers – 1:46
10. The Flesh Prince with Swell Hair – 1:33
11. Aspen Hellweek – 1:42
12. Vinni Butterfly – 1:34
Initial Pressing Score: 9/10

Beaten to Death

Digital review copy of this release provided by Mas-Kina Recordings via Viral Propaganda PR.