Ruin, Spread Plague Death (Nameless Grave Records 2021)

After you hear Spread Plague Death, the new Ruin album, you are definitely going to join the cult.

Ruin, also known as the Death Metal Cult, since it sprang back to life in 2015, has been cranking out the music at an alarming rate. While their preferred format is the split or EP, Spread Plague Death is the third full-length studio album, following Drown In Blood (2017) and Human Annihilation (2018). It feels like it has been a really long time since the last LP, but that’s is only because there have been so many other short-form releases in between. I am glad for this big one, not because I don’t like the EPs and splits – I do like them. It’s just good to have a bigger chunk all at once.

There are thirteen head-cracking tracks on the album, running around radio length, typically, with only one transitional piece. Vocals are creaking moans and shrieks, the guitars riffs are slammed down in granite chunks, and the machine is strung together with torrid rhythm.

Doom passages are abutted by blistering, speeding rants and the periodic sonic torques leave you withered enough to topple. The growling savagery of the vocals can best be described as appropriate when compared to the subjects of the songs and the furious tantrum of the other instruments.

Ruin’s music is for the crowd that appreciates aggressive music. There is not an enormous space for crossover appeal. You are either down with this hard-edged approach to metal or you aren’t. Count me in. Recommended.

Spread Plague Death is out now. Nameless Grave Records has the vinyl edition, cassette versions are available through Nero One Records and Death Metal Cult, and there is a CD from Goat Throne Records.

Band photo by Carmen Canchola.

Links.

Bandcamp, https://thedeathmetalcult.bandcamp.com/album/spread-plague-death

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/SPREADPLAGUEDEATH

Nameless Grave Records, https://namelessgraverecords.com/

Ruin, Spread Plague Death (Nameless Grave Records 2021)

Dungeon Serpent, World of Sorrows (Nameless Grave Records 2021)

Generated in a singularity, Dungeon Serpent’s new album World Of Sorrows is executed with aplomb.

The soul member of the band is Arawn, and he has to do it all from vocals to guitars to drum programming. That is a lot to ask and there are many examples of one-man-bands out there. Arawn, and Dungeon Serpent, is the exception, operating at the high end of the spectrum in composition and performance. World of Sorrows is the first album from the solo act, following an earlier two-song demo.

“Necroscope” starts the set off with a straight up death metal attack. Heavy and driving, this song should be the single. Fittingly, there is a YouTube video to go along with it and that makes sense because it is an excellent introduction to the album. “Decay” is next and it starts aggressively, too, but by the end the first melodic elements appear, and the ending is light and ethereal.

There is not much of a break as “Immortal Incubation” is a wild ride, while “Cosmic Sorcery,” my favorite track, offers moments of respite as part of the broader heavy. The closer is the longest song, the title track, “World of Sorrows.” It has an epic metal feel to it, big in its ideas and full in its production. The progression runs through the edge of doom to straight-up death metal to those gentler and spare melodic elements. In many ways it is like a suite, as we might expect in a long piece. It is just the right finale and nightcap.

World of Sorrows is out on Friday, July 16th through the ever-reliable Bandcamp as well as the Nameless Grave Records store. Recommended.

Links,

Bandcamp, https://dungeonserpentmdm.bandcamp.com/album/world-of-sorrows

Nameless Grave Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/NamelessGraveRecords

Nameless Grave Records, https://namelessgraverecords.com/

Dungeon Serpent YouTube, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChdc80haQRpzS_T4RXL92Rg

Dungeon Serpent, World of Sorrows (Nameless Grave Records 2021)