Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Misery Index - The Killing Gods

Misery Index is a band from my hometown of Baltimore that, for some unknown reason, I never paid much attention to. I was introduced to drummer Adam Jarvis by Evan (MDF organizer) several years back but still didn't decide to pick up anything by them. From the little I had heard they were a death metal/grindcore mix that just didn't grab me enough to get any of their releases. With the release of their fifth full length, The Killing Gods, I can now say that I will be paying more attention to this band. It seems that a lot of the grindcore elements have been stripped away leaving us with some relentless, riff driven death metal. Not only did this album make me notice this band, this album is now, at the very least, going to be in my top ten come year end.

This album is just a full out onslaught of huge riffs, killer solos and even some cool melodies that made me really stand up and take notice. This album even goes into epic territory with the way they wrote the first five songs that constitute a mini concept within the album. Starting with "Urfaust" as an intro they come out with all guns blazing with "The Calling" and right away you get the idea that this is a pure death metal album. The riffs are driving this song and some are brutal and pummeling while the tremolos are providing just a slight bit of melody. The solos are all metal are just amazing with lots of melody and enough technicality to make them believable. You get the idea here that this is not just another death/grind album but a musical statement. The vocals remind me of Johan Hegg for the most part and just fit this crushing music perfectly. The highlight of the concept portion of this album is "The Harrowing." This song begins with blasts, crushing riffs and a lead that is just punishing. This may even be my favorite song on the album. The solo is, once again, godly and melodic and just makes the song even better.

The remainder of the album is a good balance of death metal and some grindcore elements so this album will appeal to fans of both genres. The production is modern but not too polished or compressed but has the perfect mix. The title track has some interesting grooves in the riffing and is the longest song on the album. But the time is not wasted as the aural assault just keeps coming throughout the song. Songs like "Gallows Humor", "The Weakener," and "Heretics" are further examples of the cool grooves that they put into the riffing while still maintaining the brutality. Then you have "Sentinels" that just beats the living fuck outta you for two and half minutes with serious blasts and massive riffing. These are just some examples of the variety of songs that you have here on this album. These guys aren't fuckin' around here, they are here to kick your ass. But they do it with finesse and with huge amounts of technicality. Oh, and did I mention the solos, yet? Well I'm doing it again because they are a huge reason why this album is so good.

So now that I have finally picked up my first album by this band, I will be revisiting the remainder of their catalog. All I know is that this album made me finally take notice of this brutal but technical band. So if you like your death metal with a hint of grindcore, serious grooves, and killer solos then get this album.



VJ-atyc said...

This is indeed a very good album, can't remember if I have enjoyed a Misery Index release more.

The Elitist Metalhead said...

Yes. I like the direction this band has taken. I'll keep my eye on these guys.