Bukowski Family: Unpleasantries Abundant

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Bukowski Family: Unpleasantries Abundant
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Black Metal, Death Metal
Artificial God Productions
June 18th, 2012
Release length: 20:22
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According to the press release, the history of the Bukowski Family is “marred with such atrocities as cannibalism, perverted human dismemberment, general unpleasantness and musical ruthless massacre.” This group hides their identity, and each of the six members carries the same last name. It’s unknown when they formed, but their debut self-titled EP was a self-released recording back in 2010, with two more to follow. For 2013, they roll out a fourth through Artificial God Productions, a brand new Hungarian label with only Bukowski Family signed, meaning it’s probably a label name to put on the self-released recordings. With an aura of b-grade Slasher flicks around them, does this Black/Death Metal group offer five ruthless assaults within about twenty minutes, or does the gimmick end up hurting the final product?

The material presented shifts between aggressive faster paces and creepy slower tempos that usually have a solid groove behind them. The only problem here is the audio quality sounds a bit restrained. This is highlighted immediately with “Chair of Repentance.” The song starts with some radio static, and a slightly gritty audio quality kicks in to introduce a solid groove to some catchy, yet somewhat empty music. The gutturals leave a little to be desired here, as well as with other tracks, being just shy of pig squeals most of the time. However, the rhaspy style sounds fantastic and intimidating. “6teen” is also worth mentioning. The atmosphere is similar, being more a musical interpretation of an eighties slasher flick in atmosphere. The varied speeds and seamless shifts between Black Metal and Death Metal are executed well. Like others before it, this one utilizes vocal styles and female screams to give the sensation of more than one tormentor in the room to bang your head with to the often catchy music.

But, of the five tracks, it’s “Fountain of Woe” that stands out the most, and really shows the stronger traits of the band. This is a punishing slower offering that starts out with creepy leads and matching keyboards that sound more like something from a child’s music box. During the chorus, this finds some subtle Black Metal riffs at work to give it a touch of frostbite before the infectious and heavier main riffs kick back in. The guttural vocals find some rhaspy ones mixed in at times, and it helps to make the experience even more eerie, even crushing. There isn’t this strong a focus on Black Metal elsewhere, but “The Perversion of the Grim Tanner” does try, and its those aspects of the song that sound the best.

Unpleasantries Abundant‘s audio is just a bit too weak, removing much of the bite the performances have. The Death Metal performances also end up a bit standard at times, not really helped by the gutturals that are stuck between squealing and intimidating. What really sticks out is how twisted and creepy the band can make the Black Metal aspects, making you wish that Bukowski Family would gravitate more to that style and drop the Death Metal approach all together. Perhaps with a better audio quality the groove-filled Death Metal riffs will sound better, but, until then, this remains a recording that is at least worth sampling.

01. Chair of Repentance – 3:53
02. Carne Humana – 2:37
03. Fountain of Woe – 5:34
04. The Perversion of the Grim Tanner – 3:35
05. 6teen – 4:45
Initial Pressing Score: 6/10

 (band)

Digital review copy of this release provided by Artificial God Productions via The Metal Detector Music Promotions.