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4.5 out of 5 skulls
June 9, 2016 | ,

Noisem Blossoming Decay

There comes a time in every young man’s life when the outside world and stresses of career, family and taxes start to take their toll and that youthful rebellion fades into the night. Thankfully for Noisem, these dudes still have many years to go before they ever encounter anything to tame their rabid blend of death, thrash and grind. Blossoming Decay is a more mature, more pissed and overall more expansive album when compared to their impressive debut.

Where Agony Defined was playful and messing in its youth, this sophomore album is about as polished and tight as you can get. These guys have really honed their musicianship and performance as a group. Every track on this album is a rager, filled with targeted reckless abandon. The opening salvo of “Trail of Perturbation” is a monster of an intro — well, once the slow build-up has finally erupted in a bludgeoning rhythm and frenetic guitar work. The growth these five dudes from Baltimore have gone through as a band is immediately apparent.

Sure the songs are short and abrasive, but their brevity is more a measure of the band’s maturity than it is lack of songwriting capabilities. Elements of death metal, thrash, grind and even a touch of powerviolence all seep into each song, creating a vicious amalgam of aggression that is simply too damn infectious to ignore.

“1132” contains some of the more barbaric drum sections on the album while “Replant and Repress” injects that hardcore/powerviolence feel into the mix. The sick solo about halfway through certainly doesn’t hurt either. “Hostile End – Hollow Life” is one of my favorite songs contained in just over a minute and a half of sheer vitriol, squealing reverb and a bit of disconcerting atmosphere that bleeds into “Cascade of Scars,” a pretty solid song in its own right with massive riffage and marching rhythms.

I love the bass rumbled of “Another Night Sleeping in the Cold” before it gets into a rabid barrage of snarling riffage — it’s a neck-snapper for sure. Album closer, “Blossoming of the Web,” is chock full of plenty of Slayer-isms and is one of those tracks that leaves you hanging a bit, itching and drooling for more as it fades unbalanced into the ether, much like that youthful angst alluded earlier. Hopefully, these guys keep that fire burning long after they’ve done their growing up.

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