Agathocles/Depression (Germany) – Robotized/Böses Blut

This is a good little split that doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves.  Containing tracks from the long-running Agathocles and also long-running but still rather unknown German group Depression, this CD really holds some great tracks from each artist.  The Agathocles side is perhaps their most death metal styled material that I’ve heard, and Depression is no slouch in the face of the more popular artist with their breed of crusty death/grind.  The bands complement each other quite well, making for a split that flows quite easily and naturally in contrast to some of the more curious and glaring matchups you see regularly.

Agathocles opens with five new studio tracks and four live.  The latter are on par with most of their live releases; relatively engaging but generally having their potential smothered by a flat and weak production job that doesn’t give the music the appropriate gravitas to really ensnare the listener.  They’re better than some of the tracks found on ‘Theatric Symbolisation Of Life’, but not dramatically enough to be notable.  The studio tracks are a very different beast indeed.  They’ve got a very nice, full sound with a thick yet raw guitar tone and a solid drum presence.  The tracks themselves are very strong with a great emphasis on groove and brutal riffing.  Tempo and rhythm changes are frequent and well crafted, shifting from punk bounce to blast to death metal chug without one unnecessary note.  While I dig Agathocles’ pure grind material a lot, I can’t deny that this essentially purely death metal release has a lot of charm.

While the material on this split might not be as strictly necessary as some of the band’s full-lengths, it’s still good and I’d recommend it as one of the first things to grab for those Agathocles fans who’ve done the LP circuit and want to dig a little deeper.  It’s really got very few flaws; the vocals could perhaps be a bit more guttural and the snare could be tuned up a bit more, but overall it’s pretty satisfactory all around.  Overall, a very solid side from Agathocles; only wish it was a bit longer and not padded out with unnecessary live tracks.  But it’s Agathocles so I guess that pretty much comes with the territory.

Depression is an interesting band; on this split at least they play a variety of crust-influenced death/grind which is quite a pleasant listen.  The comes in the form of d-beats, carefully chosen crusty riffs, and the occasional high-pitched screeches, but they always seem to be a crucial addition to the otherwise standard death/grind songs, not a random gimmick.  Even removed of the crust, they would still be pretty capable.  It’s often blast-oriented to the point of approaching ‘brutal death metal’, but it contrasts with grooves very reminiscent of Autopsy (or Abscess, more appropriately), making for a varied and interesting listening experience.  They’re a band who does everything they do pretty well, sticking just close enough to the formula to maintain quality without getting boring.

I don’t know a lot about Depression; they seem to be death metal’s equivalent to a band like Demisor, which is cool even if it does deprive some people who should hear them from the opportunity.  Anyway, if you can grab this CD, it’s a good intro to Depression, who seem to be a very consistent and quality mid-era death metal band based on the material showcased here.  Overall, a good split.  Nothing that will change the world, but it’s well composed throughout.  It works, which I suppose is the important thing for stuff like this.

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~ by noktorn on August 29, 2008.

2 Responses to “Agathocles/Depression (Germany) – Robotized/Böses Blut”

  1. -Great!! Content and you can buy Rock&Metal CD-Package and Downloads mp3 song at my store. I Select to You.
    –Thank Metalhead–

  2. That album is great indeed;

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