Let’s get straight to the point here – Rotten Sound don’t fuck about. That’s been an obvious trait from Finland’s finest grindcore output for years, and one more than backed up by their 2011 record Cursed, and while vocalist Keijo Niinimaa spent the best part of 2012 fronting the briefly reunited Nasum, the Finns managed to find time to churn out a new EP in the shape of Species At War to kick start their new year.
As expected, it’s short and you guessed it, doesn’t fuck about. This is everything you would anticipate from Rotten Sound at this point, all balled up into eight exhilarating minutes of furious grind. Whether it’s an LP or an EP or whatever, the outcome of a Rotten Sound release is always the same – red-eyed savagery, and while the outcome and result is the same every time, the band still find ways to make each instalment of their catalogue a little more interesting than the last.
Since signing with Relapse Records in 2010, (and now joining Season of Mist for Europe on this release), the band has flung out two EPs and a full-length, a common trend from them, and it’s a method that has served them well in establishing their identity.
Species At War doesn’t play around with that identity or any mainstays of the band’s sound. It’s very much the strain of Scandinavian (well, even though they’re Finnish) grind that is so recognisable by its belligerence and underlying melodies that was so pioneered by their counterparts in Nasum, or in recent offerings from Afgrund. Regardless of that, Rotten Sound feel invigorated more than ever when the searing blasts of opener ‘Cause’ have struck… then you blink and the EP is over.
It’s really the only complaint that can be tabled against Species At War. It’s simply too short, especially coming from a band that are so consistently good with full-length records. Either way, it’s another impressive slab of grind from the Finns that cannot be denied.