Lord Rot - The Realm of Decay - (7.5/10)
Published on January 6, 2016
Scotland’s resident madman James McBain, the driving force behind the rip roaring black/speed metal act Hellripper and one-third of the blackened crust attack known as Rats of Reality, recently unleashed the debut demo from his new project, Lord Rot, which sees the maniacal riff master taking a stab at old school death metal. It may seem that McBain will stretch himself too thin at some point, but that time has not yet arrived. The demo, titled The Realm of Decay, is due to be released on cassette in the near future, but is currently available as a free download from the project’s Bandcamp page.
The demo only has three tracks and is roughly ten minutes long, but it’s more than enough time to show the McBain is bringing some sinister death metal. Everything is slathered with an old school sheen, from the punchy yet angular riffs to the pummeling, low brow approach to the percussion. McBain’s usual snarl is much deeper and menacing here, sounding more like a low, growling bark. It’s energetic and crushing, taking a bit of influence from Bloodbath and early Entombed and the like. Sure it’s derivative, but it’s punchy and menacing enough to be enjoyable, even to the casual death metal fans.
Lord Rot proves a nice addition to McBain’s repertoire. The Realm of Decay is a quick yet punishing trip through three tracks of ripping death metal. It’s certainly influenced by the early classics, and even offers a few Morbid Angel-tinged solos (one courtesy of Mark Lerche, who also provided one for Hellripper’s first EP). The cover art is spectacular, really bringing those early ’90s vibes, which is fitting given that primitive style that Lord Rot is going for.