Defleshuary – Mutilated And Skinned Alive

How do you begin a review like this? The band’s called Defleshuary, for fuck’s sake! That’s not even a word!

I often joke with a friend of mine about slam death naming conventions, and it appears that the guys in Defleshuary would laugh right along with us based on their choice of moniker. Honestly, how could you get a more stereotypical and ridiculous slam death name than that? Even if Defleshuary wasn’t slam death (and they aren’t, really; only about 25%, and the rest is pretty straight brutal death metal), it would be difficult to find a band that so handily fulfills expectations as this one. Basically, Defleshuary resembles a more complex, organized, Americanized form of all those Colombian brutal death bands we know and love. Take a band like Carnivore Diprosopus, add a bit more influence in the way of Suffocation and Mortician, and remove the sloppiness and crudeness that defines them, and you essentially have Defleshuary. Yes, it is fairly retarded death metal that will not flatter your sense of progress and artistry.

Bits of this remind me Gorerotted, like at the beginning of ‘Wax Sarcophagus’, right before it goes into that section that somehow synthesizes Mortician and Necrophagist, and then that weird hardcoresque section, and then… you see how it goes. Lots of strange parts that connect with each other in a rather precipitous manner. The band doesn’t like to settle down into any one thing for very long, even if those things they’re doing aren’t very jump in and of themselves. The running times of the tracks, all around two or three minutes, emphasize this musical abruptness even more. So, at least in this regard, I can’t think of any bands that sound quite like Defleshuary; maybe Terminally Your Aborted Ghost, but even they don’t make it seem so, well, UNNATURAL. In a good, way, of course; who wants natural in brutal death? Anyway, the six tracks go by pretty quickly, but each is unique enough to stand out. The most obviously weird one is ‘Hooked And Sawed’, just for the mid-section breakdown with the doubling then tripling bass drums.

Much of the riffing remind me of Gorerotted, with the sort of horror soundtrack inspired high tremolo riffing, but the chuggier material is more Suffocation or Mortician inspired. All the playing is solid, if not quite perfectly on time, and the production is pretty good overall, although it leaves the vocals slightly buried. Those vocals are your basic Devourment-style ingurgitations; not a squeal in sight, surprisingly. The drumming is probably the most impressive part of the equation overall, with more creativity than you normally see in composition, as though the now-departed Tim Ashley was doing his best to not repeat himself through the entire EP. It doesn’t always work, but it is always interesting.

I think that Defleshuary would be a band that would benefit from settling down a bit more. There’s a lot of good material on ‘Mutilated And Skinned Alive’, but it tends to be shunted aside rather quickly for another strange, seemingly unrelated segment. The songs could use about half as many ideas as they have, essentially, and they could be employed in a somewhat more exciting manner. In the quest for originality and setting themselves apart from the pack, Defleshuary have lost some of the fun and headbangability that really defines the slam style. Despite these issues, though, I’d say this EP is a success; it has direction, even if it isn’t completely narrowed down yet. ‘Mutilated And Skinned Alive’ is the sound of a band that is extremely ambitious and one that will likely do big things in the future; they just need a bit of time to mature as an entity. Worth a look from the brutal death metal fans out there, but more as primer to keep an eye out for the next stuff.

(Originally written for


~ by noktorn on October 27, 2007.

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