Alterbeast
Immortal

Formerly known as Gary Busey Amber Alert, California Alterbeast has released an album that adds to Unique Leaders killer 2014 so far which has included the outstanding Soreption release,The Kennedy Veil, as well as the upcoming Near Death Experience and Beneath albums. However, this isn’t quite as much of a brutal death metal affair as those out puts as well as the labels past releases.

I’ll be upfront, even with The Kennedy Veil and live Decrepit Birth drummer Gabe Seeber in their ranks, providing some hyper speed percussion, Alterbeast has much more in common with the likes of The Black Dahlia Murder  (no surprise as the the guitars and bass were tracked by previous TBDM bassist Ryan Williams) Wretched, Conducting from the Grave and recently, Inferi, that Unique Leader’s usual more brutal/guttural throes. There is a ton of sweeping melodic solos , leads and riffs as well as very Trevor Strnd-ish dual vocals of Cam Rogers. And even though it is played at largely warp speed akin to Origin and such, this is surprisingly harmonious, if still devastating release compared to the sheer brutality of many of Unique Leader’s past releases.

Regardless, Immortal is a pretty killer album that will appeal to the TBDM fans as well as the end of the tech death spectrum including Gorod and Decrepit Birth.  I almost want to call it ‘power tech death metal’, as you almost get a Dragonforce meets Beneath the Massacre vibe from the pretty constant, playful but everso tight, blistering shreddage of Rusty Cornell and Andrew Lamb. But don’t let that put you enough there is plenty enough blast ‘n’ bite to keep the album well within Unique Leader comfort zones, and if I’m being honest this is the sort of album I actually expected from Oblivion, Alterbeast’s label mates featuring former All Shall Perish and Antagony chaps Ben Orum and Nick Vasallo.

At a compact 30 minutes, Immortal blows by pretty quickly, wasting little time or energy. After a flutter of Mozart starts the otherwise skin peeling  opener “Flesh Bound Text”, the album is in top gear for the next 29 minutes. Highlights include the killer melodies contained in second track “Of Decimus Divine” , blistering “Into Oblivion”, short but sweet, more familiar, Unique Leader-y/Dying Fetus slams of closer ‘Throne of Maggots” , as the band, while certainly packing A LOT into each song, mange not to be completely  ADD riddled (a common feature in modern/tech death), and at least finish a riff or solo), but it’s close. End result? a killer album from a  very promising and talented new young act that has a bright future if they can keep straddling the fine line that feeds both brutality and melody equally as adeptly.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 7th, 2014

Comments

  1. Commented by: Chri5tokes

    Great review. Sounds like an album I really must hear.


  2. Commented by: Brad
  3. Commented by: Luke_22

    Killer album. Been enjoying this quite a bit. I agree with some of the influences you mentioned, but I also reckon there are strong hints of Necrophagist and later-era Suffocation in their sound.


  4. Commented by: Overman

    Definitely TBDM & Beneath The Massacre influences. The dual low/high vocals seems to honor TBDM a tad bit much. Great solos, tempo shifts, and the drumming is spectacular and tight. Good album to get away from TBDM and others said above. Unique Leader knows how to find them. Great album and Great review Mr. E. Thomas.


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