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3.5 out of 5 skulls

Guild of Destruction We Are Vermin

Guild of Destruction‘s third full-length heaping of death metal, We Are Vermin was originally released back in the Summer of 2009, but I only just recently received a promo for it. And having never heard of the band — and really liking the nastiness flowing from my speakers at the moment — I felt it necessary to give these guys some props for a hell of an album.

I’m not sure if it just took a year to make it across the water to the U.S. or if it was only just released in the states and, frankly, I don’t give a fuck why it took so long. These Australians lay down nine tracks of bestial death metal with tinges of black metal and elements of thrash thrown in for good measure — all with a technical flair. From the scathing opening track through to the epic finish, We Are Vermin is a bruising, ambitious and frightening (in a good way) indication of what kind of blasphemous hell we can expect in the future from the land down under.

Brutal As Cunt
As far as opening songs go, I don’t think I’ve heard one quite as ferocious as “Brutal As Cunt” in a good while. Right from the start blasting drums and driving riffs force growling and snarling vocals down your throat with uncaring force. Throughout this three and a half minute track you’ll encounter some technical oriented riffing and bludgeoning drums. I love the low/high vocal presentation that the band is utilizing thus far.

Mutating The Gene
For as ferocious as the previous song was, “Mutating The Gene” is ambitious. With a much slower overall pace, the song is still fierce, but has a more structured vibe to it with less of a straightforward death metal approach. When the guys do erupt into frenetic blasts, it’s got a bit more of a black metal vibe. The guitars carry a technical vibe to the riffing, but with more groove. It’s a really catchy track at times with some of the more memorable moments of the album. This nearly six minute beast is chock full of excellent musicianship, searing leads and bruising rhythms. I want more.

When Angels Fuck Demons
After the minute long acoustic guitar intro, the guys open up with some melodic death riffs to a huge scream that introduces a nice black metal feel and some sweet grooves to the riffs. The vocals seem to be a bit more powerful on this one, as well. There’s a good deal of tempo shifts (from smooth grooving death metal to blasting black metal) and technical aspects to what the guys are cranking out on this evil song. The lead around the 3:30 mark shreds nicely. I’m digging the layered vocal work, as well.

Death Of Man
“Death of Man” opens up with a big growl and dives head first into a wood chipper powered by blasting death metal. After the previous two, more technically inclined tracks, it’s nice to get back down to bare bones, bludgeoning brutatlity — with some great groove and inventive drum work to top it off. This is definitely a fun, yet badass song to get lost in. Fucking love it!

Suffering The Beast
A much more dramatic beginning to this next track sets it apart from the rest of the album. The guitars that get it going have a bit of a blackened tinge to them. The dramatic atmosphere doesn’t last long however, as G.O.D. erupt from the calm with blasting drums and vicious vocals. The track then descends into technical chaos with elements of grind and black metal coming together in a calamitous climax. This is another badass track that cannot be missed.

Plague Elixir
With little fanfare, “Plague Elixir” fades in smoothly from the previous track with catchy guitar work and some seriously nasty, snearing vocals. The lead at :40 is just as nasty as those growls and lasts a good while. There’s a large black metal influence on the remainder of the song as the guys blast and pummel their way through your wretched soul.

My Ruins
Ambient noise quickly gives way to catchy guitars and a good groove as the vocals come growling in. The groove is quickly pounded into submission with unrelenting drums and technical riffing. This is one hell of a song that encompasses rapidly shifting tempos along with that guttural growl to great effect, reaching screaming heights and plummeting depths.

The Abyss
I love the opening guitar work to “The Abyss.” It’s simple, yet you know it’s going to build to something so much more, especially with the inclusion of a more melodic tone. Yup. I was right. After the one minute mark the drums amp up their pace and ferocity as the guitars inject an ass load of technicality into their playing. Man, these guys could go any direction with their music — they’ve got the talent to do it, that’s for sure. Yet, the groove and vocal patterns around 2:20 are fucking infectious as hell! Awesome song.

Vengeance or Salvation
“Vengeance or Salvation” wraps up We Are Vermin nicely with a bit of a Slayer like vibe to the opening few seconds before the guys settle into some beefy riffs and guttural mayhem. The pace is a bit slower than most of the stuff on the album initially, but it steadily increases in speed to a pounding ferocity that’s only tempered by some creative drumming and sweet guitar work. No matter how brutal these guys can get they never cease to mix things up, keeping the album varied , enjoyable and devoid of any sort of stagnation. I’m going to have to find their other discs after this listening to this beast.

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Additional Notes:
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