Album Review

Napalm Death – “Apex Predator / Easy Meat” – [Century Media]

whngr   10/19/2022   12-inch, A Library

Sonus Hominis Caedes

Fucking sonic devastation at a fairly brisk pace. I jest, these guys have been taking the concept of rapidity to new realms for decades. However, this four-piece continues to push boundaries in interesting and thoughtful ways that the bands that were spawned as a direct result of their output have not. As evidenced by the foreboding opening/title track that begins with a glorious bellowing harkening to a corruption of Gregorian chant before degrading into a cacophonous, militant guttural remonstrance, prior to the carnage beginning in earnest. I am quite partial to “Hierarchies” (B4), which explores a similar backing vocal to the title track with thundering toms and nearly lilting guitar while lyrically referencing the spilling of innocent blood. A theme that they have plumbed ad nauseum, but do so with creativity, grace, dignity, and intensity, as evidenced by the rending of flesh and carnal imagery that has long been a staple in the N.D. stable.

Napalm Death are the progenitors of Grind Core, creating a sound in the eighties that has been emulated and adulated for over three decades by the crustiest, most primal outcasts of our species. An outfit that celebrates violent sounds while espousing a message highly critical the dominant paradigm and a culture built on violence. These men have nothing but derision for man’s tendency for war, consumption, greed, and malice. Emerging from the Anarcho/Peace Punk soil they sprouted from lo these many years ago, there has always been a message of hope, a desire for positive change, the righting of wrongs, and potentially atonement for transgressions against the downtrodden and unwashed masses. Though I gave up long ago on humanity, it seems that they have not. Napalm Death is still pushing their narrative with devastating poise and an eagerness to explore the many nuances of brutality while staying true to… perhaps continuing to define, the genre they created. 

Birmingham, UK –  2015

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