Mindly Rotten – The Most Exquisite Agonies

If you cross the two main styles of Colombian death metal: that of filthy slam like Carnivore Diprosopus and ultra-technical, violent brutal death metal like Internal Suffering, you’d get something like Mindly Rotten’s ‘The Most Exquisite Agonies’.  The result of such a perverted blend is an album that’s as spastic and wild as it is filthy and ultra-distorted.  It’s the auditory equivalent of an attack by killer hobo with a butcher knife in his hand and no food in his belly for three days.  It’s ugly, fast, demented, painful, and very short.

The short running time (just over twenty five minutes) is in this case a blessing, though, because I doubt that anyone could handle much more than that of this sort of death metal.  Mindly Rotten remind me a lot of stalwarts Malignancy, playing a similar style of constantly changing, furious death/grind with a small army of pinch harmonics dotting constantly throughout the album’s abrasive riffing.  Calling this ‘technical’ is both accurate and a misnomer at the same time: there’s a huge array of notes being played blindingly fast at all times, with no riff or rhythm seeming to last more than a few seconds before being kicked and the head in favor of yet another weird change.  Each member of the three-piece is extremely dexterous with his instrument of choice, but seems remarkably amateurish as well, as although every member can play incredibly fast and technically, they also seem barely able to keep in time with one another, transforming pieces that could at a lower tempo be called ‘songs’ into blurring attacks of frantic, grinding noise.

Wet, slurring vocals in the vein of Terminally Your Aborted Ghost with the addition of a more conventional growling style eject passages of strangely thoughtful and philosophical lyrics, which seem to revolve around nihilism and rejection of societal standards as their main theme.  In conjunction with the ultra-misanthropic lyrics is a similarly misanthropic style of songwriting, which always features a constantly blasting drum performance which explodes into abrupt, tactless fills alongside a nervous, jittering guitar which alternates between foaming, top fret tremolo riffing interspersed with ever present pinch harmonics, awkwardly shuffling chugs (which last for all of two seconds before a new tremolo riff comes in), and completely irrationally placed Slayeresque solos that take a rusty hacksaw to even the most remote idea of melody.  There is no groove anywhere.  There is nothing you can headbang to, not merely because it’s such violently arrhythmic music, but also because it never dips below ‘jesus fuck’ as the primary choice of tempo.

I was able to find precisely one point on ‘The Most Exquisite Agonies’ where I was able to find an actual time signature that I could count out with reasonable accuracy.  The rest seems to be a neverending blur of furious intensity.  It’s only now, after reading the lyrics, listening to it a few times in a row, and really getting the feel of this album that I truly ‘get it’.  This isn’t a normal brutal death metal album; it’s an art piece about the insanity and chaos of modern existence.  Mindly Rotten achieves a sort of feeling that most black metal bands only dream of emulating: that of feral barbarism in the face of a world that seeks to tame all wild things.  It is a mandatory listen for those who think that metal today is now safe and toeing the line of mainstream convention.  It is a masterpiece of modern death/grind that should be heard by all who see themselves as a serious member of the metal scene.  The words of the band themselves say it best though, truly embodying the primal spirit of death metal, on ‘The Humanity’s Fall’:

“To escape from this obvious false world
I won’t get involved in its endless circle”

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~ by noktorn on January 27, 2008.

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