A band could do a lot worse than having their first recorded appearance be on a split with the legendary Martyrdöd, and Baltimore’s Neolithic did just that. With barely a month gone by, they are now set to release their new three song EP Cult of Ignorance (also via Deep Six Records) upon the world.
Neolithic are based out of Baltimore, and this five-piece combine Death Metal with a heavy D-Beat/Crust influence. Knowing this going into the split with Martyrdöd, perhaps the biggest surprise was the prevalence of groove on their song “Inner Adversary.” That distinctly American-sounding Death Metal riff that opened the song lent a nice diversity to the split and made an excellent compliment to everything that came after. The balance though has been restored though on “Cult of Ignorance,” with high velocity violence taking center stage.
Still, opener “Blinded” is far from primitive, the tricky riffing that kick things off delivers atavistic fury despite itself. Top notch musicianship is filtered through a feral Punk attitude, and though the riff wouldn’t sound out of place on a Cannibal Corpse album, the listener is really treated to the best of both worlds. And before the track is over, Neolithic still find the way back to more groove-oriented moments. But rather than the Death Metal groove from the split, the sound here is more sludgy and Eyehategod inspired.
The true D-beat attack doesn’t arrive until the title-track. “Cult of Ignorance” is a parade of non-stop hammer blows and is sure to start riot wherever performed. Everything here sounds like a skilled transformation of a single chord progression, with each permutation giving the song a sense of forward momentum. There are slower moments peppered throughout the song, and they mix-up some of the D-beat with some double bass work as well. This release shows a band comfortable with every facet of their sound, and they are able to construct a song seamlessly, and despite it’s somewhat disparate elements, the whole is cohesive.
“Rapacity” closes things out, and is the closest we have to the Death Metal groove that jumped out at the listener on “Inner Adversary.” Not that it is a slow track, not at all, in fact the blast beats contained within will peel the paint off the walls. But there definitely moments to nod your head along to, and the guitar/drum interplay wouldn’t be out of place on an early 90’s Death Metal demo.
This release is less than ten minutes in length, and when combined with the split, we’re still talking less than fifteen minutes of total material; it is safe to say Neolithic is a band that understands the effectiveness of short bursts of shock and awe. They dish out the maximum amount of damage in the shortest amount of time. Yet, at least for these guys, I wouldn’t want it any other way. These aren’t just haphazard blasts of anger, but songs you can really sink your teeth into. They deftly combine their Crust influences with Death Metal, and display an instrumental acumen rare for others trying to inhabit a similar space. Having existed for less than a year, Neolithic is off to an amazing start. Here’s to seeing what comes next, because so far, this band can do no wrong.