‘I’m a cold slithering monster haunting your holy footsteps forever...’
“Terrifyer” will forever stand as one of the heaviest albums ever recorded, let’s not even entertain any notion to the contrary. For their third full-length this Virginia-based trio have tapped into a kind of unhinged feral aggression that pushes the songs into a whole new stratosphere of sonic savagery altogether. The intensity that these songs emit is truly astounding and gives the listener more than a passing suspicion that “Terrifyer” is the result of years of pent up psychotic rage. Well, the door of the padded cell has swung open and a flood of Grindcore awesomeness is heading your way...
‘A six year old girl dances on my ceiling. She might as well be dancing on a grave.’
It’s amazing how much these guys have matured (i.e. gotten angrier) since their inception back in the mid 90s. Their debut proper, “Explosions In Ward 6”, was quite shitty (far too derivative of ANAL CUNT, in my opinion), and even though “Prowler In The Yard” was very good the title of best PD album goes to “Terrifyer”, period. Everything about this album is super-charged, with even the occasional down tempo song bristling with underlying rage. Their core sound is undoubtedly 100% Grindcore but traces of contemporary Drone and healthy amounts of groove can also be heard throughout, giving their music a very fleshed-out and diverse sound in spite of the singular emphasis on heaviness. The way the intro leads into “Pretty In Casts” is just excellent, and I’d wager that if you’re unaware of the exact moment the sudden shift in intensity takes place a change of pants is well in order. Going into a song-by-song analysis would be pretty pointless since the album is comprised of 21 slices of rage, few of which breach the 2:00 mark. Despite its brevity the songs all feature more than a handful great riffs and punishing grooves, and its a testament to guitarist Scott Hull's talents that he’s able to conjure up such a ‘full’ and obliterating sound in under two minutes, made even more impressive considering he’s the sole guitarist in the band and that they don’t have a full-time bassist. Awesome.
‘Her blood, my Catholic wine, it moves slowly through me... disintegrates my spine...’
Individual highlights? I could be super generous and name all of them but this is not entirely true. The album does lose a bit of steam towards the end, with most of the stand-out moments occurring during the first half of the album. Both “Pretty In Casts” and “Boy Constrictor” are incredibly heavy numbers where the amount of tempo changes and the riff-count is ratcheted up at a frightening pace, while others like “Gravedancer” and the title track rely more on slower, creepier riffs and harrowing semi-clean vocal howls to create a bleak-as-fuck vibe. “Towering Flesh” is perhaps the best song here (and at 3 minutes also the longest), seeing the band mix up slow grooves, Thrash riffs, and even tad of Doom to create a monster of a track. Hell, they even throw in a great solo in there! As an added bonus the album also comes packaged with a second DVD disc containing a 37 minute long track, “Natasha”, which breaks the mould a bit by being full-on Drone/Doom with the rapid Grind only making fleeting appearances here and there. Despite its hefty duration the track is another triumph for them, both bleak and beautiful to equal degree. The whole thing inspires mental images of some creepy sewer that Freddy Krueger calls home.
‘The tape across your mouth says more than your words ever could’
Combine all this with a spot-on production job and a gloriously unhinged lyrical concept about run-down play parks, blue spiders and a girl with murder in mind and you have a bona fide classic on your hands. I’d rate this as one of the essential Grind albums out there, together with TERRORIZER’s “World Downfall” and BRUTAL TRUTH’s “Extreme Conditions Demand Extreme Responses”. You owe it to yourself to get a copy of this album without hesitation. You might need some intense therapy afterwards but it’ll be worth it.
(Online April 8, 2009)