August 23, 2013 | , | 4.5

Antigama, Meteor

Antigama: Meteor

Antigama’s sixth full-length and first since 2009 (there was a the Stop the Chaos EP last year), Meteor, sees the Polish outfit sort of return to form with these eleven tracks of technically blistering grindcore. Less than thirty minutes in run-time, this album isn’t simply another grind release. Antigama have ramped up the inclusion of noise and programming elements into their tightly woven blend of science fiction, grind, hardcore, death metal and metalcore. The result is staggeringly awesome.

From the start of “Collapse” to the closing notes of “Untruth,” the band showcases just how on top of their game they are. Grinding blasts of frantic drums shift dynamically to progressive flourishes and back again while ?ukasz Myszkowski shreds his vocal chords with rabid barks and snarling growls. Throw in a spot-on production (featuring mastering work by none other than Scott Hull) and you’ve got one of the few must-have releases of 2013.

“Collapse” kicks you in the teeth with the first strike of pile-driving grindcore. It’s as furious an opener as any band of this style could hope for. Burly guitars, machine gunning drums and rumbling bass combine with Myszkowski’s delivery to perfection. “The Key” is just as energetic as the album opener as it pummels its way through your speakers with sharp tempo shifts backing a guitar attack that is razor sharp. For as technical as this album is, there is no lack of groove here. It’s spastic at times, but the band do well to keep a solid momentum flowing from song to song, allowing you to send your own gray matter bouncing around haphazardly within your skull.

“Prophecy” is one of the strong songs on the disc as it incorporates plenty of electronic programming and noise into its din of grinding mayhem — and let’s not forget a chorus that will have you barking along with the group each and every time it comes on. The title track is full of reverb-backed squalls, off kilter timing and progressive elements that are sure to keep you on your toes for the duration. It’s one of my favorite tracks on the album. “Fed by the Feeling” switches things up on us a bit as Antigama tone down the grind in favor of a more pronounced metallic hardcore edge as well as a jazzy bit towards the end — it’s one of the more dynamic songs here.

Meteor is one of those albums that begs to be heard more than once in a single sitting. There’s just so much to digest and absorb in each track. Whether it be the blasting inferno of “Crystal Tune” or the marching, staggered riffs of “The Signal” or the lurching album closer “Untruth,” Antigama have more than enough here for any fan of grind or underground metal in general to fully enjoy. Meteor is, simply put, one hell of an album.