Dead Congregation
Purifying Consecrated Ground EP

It’s ironic that a band called Dead Congregation, with gleefully offensive song titles like “Feasting Angelcunts” and “Vomitchrist,” can be so pleasurable. The metal-uninitiated may not understand what’s going on in this relentless battery, but they also don’t have the same well-furrowed neural pathways that only comes from years of learning and appreciating all the hallmarks of classic death metal.

That’s what makes Dead Congregation such a find. Every element here – massive, fluid riffs, hell-gurgle vocals and an invigorating drum performance – meshes to create a death metal experience that pays homage to all the greats of yesteryear while still managing to sound fresh as well. It’s archetypal and advanced at the same time.

And despite being only an EP, it’s a beast – a clockwork deathmachine, cranking away at a pace you might not expect from something with such a hulking presence. The flurried riffs throughout border on black metal’s ferocity – fans of fast, brutal death like Origin should eat this up. Dead Congregation‘s strong sense of dynamics allow them to slow it down as well, as with the groovy, doom-laden riff that (seemingly) closes out “Lucid Curse,” which then lumbers back after a brief fadeout to crush your skull again and finish the job. It’s a smart transition that lulls you for the blistering firestorm of “Angelcunts.”

Even at these frenzied speeds, songs are kept streamlined and to the point – a couple of well-chosen riffs trading off with each other, rather than an overly complex jumble of competing ideas – this is tight and technical without some of the distracting lack of editing that sometimes plagues showier bands. If there’s one minor complaint, it’s that the vocals – while perfectly disgusting – sound blunted and muffled to me – I would’ve liked something with a little more bite, especially given how sharp everything else is.

Dead Congregation‘s LP Graves of the Archangels enjoyed a terrific review here a few weeks ago, so if you’re planning on picking that one up, go ahead and add this re-issued EP to your list as well. After all, a congregation is always stronger with more members.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jordan Itkowitz
July 5th, 2008

Comments

  1. Commented by: Cynicgods

    Any death metal fan should have this in his/her collection along with Graves Of The Archangels.


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