Post Mortal Possession - Possessing Entity - (8/10)
Published on January 28, 2015
Post Mortal Possession joined the ranks of Pittsburgh’s death metal scene in 2013. The band’s debut EP, Possessing Entity, dropped in late 2014 and features five tracks of punishing and grimy death metal. When Pittsburgh’s steel mills no longer offered ample employment, the city began to decline into a rather grim shell of its former self. To those not familiar with the scene at all, it should be known that it mirrors Pittsburgh’s great industrial decline: it’s dark, grim and dirty. If you doubt the the city’s legacy for the dark and sinister, look no further than Nunslaughter or Wrought Iron. While Pittsburgh has gradually improved as a city, with burgeoning businesses and the like, it’s metal scene has remained dark.
Possessing Entity is a rather short affair, but it’s brimming with varied approaches that make the twenty minutes fly past faster than normal. From the grooving rhythms and Slayer-esque riffs done over blasting drums on “Death March” to the moody trudging and fist swinging stomp on “The Harvest”, Post Mortal Possession covers a lot of ground. The music is technically proficient without delving into modern sterility, as the guitars burst forth with a a barrage of fast paced trem runs, staccato chords and meaty palm muting. The drumming is intense, with constant blasts and double bass runs and more fast-paced fills than you can shake at stick at. The vocals switch between deep, bellowing growls and a high pitch, vitriolic scream, adding even more variety to the mix.
Despite the unrelenting death metal, Post Mortal Possession also throws in a dose of technical leads and interesting, off-kilter, almost progressive rhythms. Strangely enough, these sections, like the midpoint of “The Arrival”, really remind one of Pittsburgh technical heavyweights Creation Is Crucifixion or even Flight of Icarus (oh, the nostalgia). Even with the outside influence, Possessing Entity is death metal in its purest form; vile, vicious and heavy as all get out. The production boasts just enough power to keep all of the instruments at the proper levels without sounding lifeless; retaining that dark and grimy feel essential to this style of death metal without sounding like it was recorded in a garbage can.
Possessing Entity is a confident debut and one that should see Post Mortal Possession bringing some attention back to the Pittsburgh underground. Pulverizing and fast, it boasts enough technical savvy to fight its way past the lowbrow legions. From primal, blasting to twisting segments of malformed riffing to brief spasms that border grind, there is a lot going on, but the band keeps things in check with a cohesive sound. The band released Possessing Entity as a limited CD run and as a digital download, so pick your poison.