January 15, 2009 | | 3

Putrescence, Sledgehammer Holocaust

I haven’t had the opportunity to listen to Putrescence‘s previous releases, but I fully aware of their reputation for the rotted tongue in cheek lyrics and menacing blend of grind-core and straightforward death metal. With Sledgehammer Holocaust the Canadian outfit are hell bent on leaving you a batter mass of bloody pulp by any means necessary.

Mixing their disturbed humor with a messy conglomeration of grinding rhythms and death metal, the group only prove one thing on their latest release — it’s not the production or song playing that matters, it’s how hard you bludgeon your instruments in the making of your record that matter. There’s really nothing new to what these guys are doing, but you’ve got to love their enthusiasm.

Machete through head like knife through butter
You’ve just got to love how over-the-top these song titles are. The opening track starts with a short sound clip before descending into a duel vocal attack backed by shear carnage in the form of manic drums and caustic riffing. There’s plenty of tempo changes throughout this one. The lyrics to the groups tracks are hilarious. The riffs around the 1:40 mark are pretty damned evil.

Sledgehammer holocaust (shit and bone infused)
The title track starts off with light drum work and heavy bass as a sick groove appears for a few moments. It’s quickly eclipsed by rapid fire drums and an extended scream. This track is as it’s titled, a straight to the cranium sledgehammer beating.

Malefic and uncontrolled demolition of the living
The band let loose with a volley of chaotic grind-core at the onset of this next track. Layered and multiple vocal deliveries only prove to reinforce that feeling of manic energy. Man, this sub two minute track is aggressive and in your face violent — I love it!

Eye sockets venting black, rotten blood
More over-the-top violent lyrics accompany pummeling drums and driving riffs as this next one gets underway. There are a few slowdowns while the band swaps in some sound clips for their own disturbed, caustic vocal deliveries. The 1:40 mark sees some decent guitar work as a couple of short lived leads make an appearance.

Gutted, coated with malignancy and re-emboweled
Big guitars greet the victim, I mean listener, on this next one. It’s got a much slower, warbling feel to it as it gets underway. The pace picks up to a driving death metal influenced mid-tempo rhythm as layered vocals come in. There is a decent breakdown-like chorus that’ll have you shouting along with the vile lyrics.

Forced to ingest caulking up nose and down trachea
The vocals on this one seem to be a bit more guttural and raw as the group completely obliterates anything in their way with manic drum blasts and caustic guitars. The :45 mark sees a complete devolution of song structure as we know it. These guys go ape shit on their instruments and vocal chords during that brief assault.

The super flying off a roof happy show
The lyrics to this one make absolutely no sense, but that doesn’t really matte when they are delivered with spastic riffs and heavy drum work. The slower pace of this short track just makes it that much more brutal and oddball. I kind of dig it.

Moonlight Illuminates Limbs Forced into Impossible Directions
Putrescence bludgeon your battered sack of flesh from every direction with grinding blasts and slamming riffs. This short, violent track is packed full of beefy riffs, catchy rhythms and a few sound clips. It’s one of the stronger songs on the album, as well.

Ukulele players drugged out machete attack at the flea market
This song title has got to be up in there in the pantheon of classic song titles. It paints such a great image in my head, regardless of how the band decides to deliver the lyrics. This is a manic, blasting track detailing the short commentary on the social aspects of rednecks.

I am your flesh
After a brief sound clip, we’re grated alive with spastic drums that are all over the place and messy riffs that let you know these dudes just don’t give a fuck. The vocals are raw and guttural and fit into the steaming pile of ground up flesh perfectly. I’m not sure, but after reading the lyrics several times, I think this one is about cannibalism.

The slabby and crimpy ascension up the snivelling shit
Thrown into the heavy riffs and layered growls is a decent, sludgy groove. This one has a bit more varied sound than the previous tracks, but is no less brutal and aggressive. It’s just too bad it lasts only 46 seconds.

Halved and preserved for further ritualistic abuse
This one is straight forward death metal with a little grind thrown in for good measure. The unrelenting pace to this one will leave you drained and dizzy as drum blast after drum blast turn your guts to a putrid pulp. Still, there’s some decent groove to the second half of the track that’s more than infectious and shows some technical progression on the band members’ parts.

Hillbilly savants: quiet dignity and delicate relationships
I love the opening to this next one. It’s heavy and filled with a chugging groove for about 40 seconds before you’re thrown head first into a human-size meat grind. It appears as either my hearing has gone to shit as a result of the first half of the album or these guys saved their best for last. We’ll call it a little of both.

q: mutilated with chainsaw? a: split with maul and cannibalized
The final track is another one that really makes no sense and I’m starting to like that about this band. The complete lack of coherence in their lyrics backs up the spastic, grinding death metal these guys hurl at you from every direction.

~ ~ ~

I’m not sure this one will make it into my rotation very often, but when I’m the mood for some masochistic punishment, it’ll be the first one I throw into the disc player. Putrescence’s Sledgehammer Holocaust is chaotic, grinding and brutal with a heavy dose of humor thrown in that’ll leave you confused and bloody. I wholeheartedly recommend this one if you’re looking for something raw, different and heavy as hell.

Favorite Tracks:
All of them

Additional Notes: