Sludge and black metal artisans Death Motif have released an EP called The Water. The album title is fitting, what with pestilent waters and wild flora donning the album cover. This is a band that writhes in the murky wasteland of extreme metal ingenuity. The killer Southern licks combine with fast tremolo riffs and drumming deserving of assault and battery charges. This isn’t derivative second-wave inspired tributary material.
Death Motif share parts Eyehategod and Mutilation Rites. Violent from start to finish, Death Motif prove themselves a ready ensemble to move pits in large audiences. The riffage is energetic and the bass adds a nice punch to the powerful beats. The EP is comprised of only three tracks, but this is a good hint of what’s to come from the band. It’s one of the best short releases I’ve heard this year, staying in my playlist as long as I’ve had the EP.
Imagine treading knee-deep into the Everglades, and you’ll get a sense of how sludgy the guitars sound. When the band switch to tremolo riffs, they play some nice melodies. The licks weave in and out of the riffs, and the drummer refrains from blasting start to finish. The production suits the music nicely. The guitars could have used more grit, in order to add needed heaviness to the mix, but at the end of the listening experience, there’s not so much as a negative impression made from the short burst of aural violence. Death Motif sounds original and refreshing, quite unlike the way many bands these days fail to draw excitement from jaded listeners.
The band don’t settle into second-wave black metal style mid-tempo bridges. The chord transitions are unpredictable, and the whole band plays with frenetic energy, all the way down to the vocals, which sound like aggressive hardcore shouts. I may not know exactly what the band’s lyrics are about, but the music doesn’t drive anyone to hypnotic ritualesque introspection. This is a moshpit mover of an album, plain and simple. Prepare to bounce off the walls or gtfo if you’re too stoned to party!
For a wild ride into the darkside of the amazon jungle, try a hit of Death Motif’s The Water, now.