Exhumed/Gruesome
Twisted Horror split

This is a nice little ditty of a release with Matt Harvey leading the way in both bands.  For the Exhumed side it’s 3 songs and 2 for the Gruesome side – “The Gruesome Twosome”…I couldn’t resist.  5 songs in about 20 minutes and I have gone through this split multiple times and it’s a lot of fun.  For the unfamiliar,  Exhumed is a grindcore band who mixes in splashes of goregrind and death metal. One of my favorite bands still after all these years.  I remember their split in the 90’s with Hemdale and Hemdale giving me a shout out in the cd.  I had not heard Exhumed until that split and then I was an instant fan.  Gruesome is a Death homage band with all original songs all played in the spirit of Death and capturing the essence of various time periods of the Death discography.

Side Exhumed:  “Rot your Brain” wasted no fucking time as the song immediately goes into the Holy Shit moment with the guitar riff and then right into the grind blast.  Ferocious and Matt and Ross’ vocal pairing – still some of the best in all of extreme music.  Just growling the song title over the blast is enough for me to start picking up change and doing whirlwind slams right through the front door to the mailbox.  About halfway into the song the band breaks into a killer groove and Mike Hamilton adding some great double bass action.  Nice audible bass guitar work and Sebastian Phillips and Matt going for the dual guitar attack and then some nice soloing action before the grind blast comes right into the mix and Ross’ bass guitar plucking sounding awesome over the blast.  The very audible pinch harmonics cut through the speaker like a laser slicing through your head.  “Buried to Die” has some nice opening drum work then right into the blast with Matt’s scream over the blast – perfect timing.  More monster blasting.  The song is not 3 minutes so the band wastes little time to thrash your body from side to side and cram in a lot of tasty catchy riffs.  The 1.10 grind is brutal bliss – ferocious and the rhythm section is goddamned monstrous on this split.  More guitar soloing – I always have enjoyed Exhumed’s improvement over the years and not straying away from the melody – they know how to write extremely memorable music.  “Dead, Deader, Deadest” is D to the third power and more ferocious blasting – a bunch of chaos as the band is grinding just as fast as their return to form album – the 2019 amazing Horror album.  A short album that was straight up balls to the wall grindcore from beginning to end – album slays.  Anyway, this track gets into a nice groove, where I noticed some Slayer melodies and then right into a vintage 90’s death metal beat that will destroy eardrums worldwide.  More guitar soloing and then right into crushing blasts to end the Exhumed portion.  These 3 Exhumed songs are outstanding.

Side Gruesome: “A Mind Decayed” comes through your speakers and it’s clear from the guitar tone the band is going for the Death Leprosy era on this one.  Robin’s bass is thumping, Gus Rios is sounding great on drums and Daniel Gonzalez alongside Matt Harvey on guitars really captures the Death guitar tone to an upside down T.  Matt sounding more growly on this, a deeper Chuck Schuldiner.  The speed and sound will make you smile from ear to ear and some awesome guitar soloing going on.  The riffing and speed is just fabulous and sounds like Death released Leprosy part II.  “Led into the Dark” is next and the slow down moment sounds like “Left to Die” off the classic Death album, that these Gruesome songs are targeting.  It’s a definite homage – no doubt.  The songs gets into the fast part again and then slows down for a nice melodic guitar solo.  A little bit later the classic “Left to Die” moment comes back with Matt’s growl/scream – almost bringing a tear to my eye how he and the rest of the band harnesses Chuck’s very soul.

Get the Twisted Horror split today.  This showcases Exhumed and Gruesome at their best.  The production is awesome capturing both styles perfectly and this is such a fun listen from two outstanding bands –  with a great album cover to boot. Killer!!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
September 29th, 2020

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