Sunday, July 25, 2010

Disgusting - Disgusting EP (1996)

A year after the lackluster debut Shapeshifterblues, Norwegians Disgusting would produce one more release through Head Not Found records, a self-titled EP which focused on a more intense iteration of the band. Stylistically there is not a huge boost or difference between this material and what you'd find on the full-length. The band seem to use the same, underwhelming production values that sound like a glorified demo or rehearsal. Granted, some bands can really make this work. Disgusting is not among them. You've also got the same variation of death/grind riffs and clean guitar sequences that play towards the psychedelic span of the cover image (which is quite interesting, honestly).

"Immemorial" christens the effort with a blazing trail of muddy death/grind, vocals alternating from the same low guttural pitch to the relentless, distorted rasp while forgettable riffs flurry beneath. The drums are pretty fast, but I just don't like the sound, and when they break out into the Sepultura-like wailing siren guitars in the bridge, you feel like you've just entered the Norse equivalent to Roots. "Undivided Impulse" uses a lengthy clean sequence with flowing bass and some bluesy leads with a pretty bland tone, picking up into an explosion of metal fusion before the baleful groove riff at the end with grind screaming over it. "Fall Feeble" transitions from crunchy doom to a thrashing death blitz with semi-sweet riffing that actually benefits from the raw buzz and bristle of this guitar tone. "Kannibaal" is a mess of dull death, grinding riffs that attempts to pick up the intensity from the prior song, then break it down into a morose breakdown of big chords and searing leads, only to become monotonous in short order. The outro track is even worse, with ultimately futile chords over a slow beat and some snarling.

Disgusting is not an improvement over Shapeshifterblues, but just more of the same fusion of death, grind, slower doom/sludge riffs and duplex vocals, given a 'thoughtful' side through the occasional use of the clean guitars. I counted perhaps one worthwhile riff on the whole EP, that being in "Fall Feeble", and the rest not even remotely compelling to the ear. It's a shame, really, because there were just so few Norse death metal bands of note, their strength clearly across the gulf of extremity on the shores of black metal. LJ Balvaz' other band Cadaver was far better than this, as was Molested, or the debut of Darkthrone A Soulside Journey, so stick with those.

Verdict: Fail [3.75/10]

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