Much delayed split LP between two Boston Death Metal behemoth's, Innumerable Forms and Blessed Offal. Pressed by the metal arm of Painkiller Records; Hell Massacre Records. Picked this up this week at one of the shows Innumerable Forms played as part of their tour over here with Mammoth Grinder. This is the tour version of the record. I have no idea when Painkiller will put this up for wider sale or if it will differ from this version. I was lucky enough to see these bands play twice during this tour, once last week in Melbourne, and last night in my home town of Brisbane. Crushing would have to be the only way I could describe IF last night. As I've mentioned quite a few times on here, with some session help from Chris Corry, the band is the sole work of Justin Detore (aka Dance Floor Justin) of just about every good hardcore band coming out of Boston at the moment, and what you get here is punishing, down trodden Death Metal. A hefty dose of Finnish Death ala Abhorrence and Demi God is obviously Justin's largest influence, though flourishes of some of the early Swedish torch bearers like Unleashed and Grave pry their way in too. Comparisons to Bolt Thrower probably wouldn't go astray either, but that band can be heard in just about every old school rehash record these days. For a while I questioned with myself whether I liked this band so much just because of DFJ's involvement, or just because the stuff here is actually that good. Last night's impressive set confirmed the latter for me. This is masterful Finnish Death executed perfectly by someone who obviously has a firm grip on how to write and play an interesting tune, and what this kind of stuff should sound like in the first place. Video should surface within the next week to prove that.
Four songs here, three of which appeared last year on a promo cassette with a different mastering job and one previously unreleased track in the form of an Amebix cover. I should also note that the live incarnation of the band (completed by Chris Ulsh and Brian Boekman of Mammoth Grinder on lead guitar and drums respectively, Jensen Ward of Iron Lung on second guitar and Doug Free of Rival Mob on bass) played a pretty great cover of "Funeral Bitch" by none other than Master last night.
Blessed Offal could probably be compared to some sort of early US Death Metal. Clearest influences sound to me like a mix of Master, and Morbid Angel, perhaps even old Cannibal Corpse. Semi technical stuff with a relatively precise and heavy recording. Their contribution here marks something like the fourth or fifth release of theirs, following a couple demos and two EP's. To be honest, of all the stuff that I've heard from the band, their first CD and cassette only EP release is my favourite and a bit better than the stuff here. Don't be mislead though, this is still pretty harsh and brutal Death Metal. Perhaps my fondness of the Boston Nu Scene has something to do with my bias. I am quite fond of the idea of more punk orientated dudes having a diverse and thorough enough understanding to execute genuine metal well, and obviously Innumerable Forms is the best modern example of that at the moment. I really hope DFJ decides to record more, because five original songs across two releases is not enough.