A sweep of sullen piano is not something one expects from the heavier side of Death Metal, but that’s what you get with the Intro (uniquely titled “Intro”) from DEBT OF NATURE’s new album “Crush, Kill And Burn," their second full length effort. What makes the initial track so incongruent isn’t just its own character, but that it doesn’t swell or make any smooth transition into the band’s brand of DM, but is instead cast aside by “Masturbator Generator” and that song’s full throttle steamrolling. With a dash of groove, a sprinkle of technical Metal, a tiny pinch of melody, DEBT OF NATURE here buttresses a grinding swath of surging aggression. It’s groove reminiscent of middle to latter day MORBID ANGEL, “Crush, Kill And Burn” makes the effort to slide between crushing (!) and also gripping grooves, with one-to-three note drops and hammer-ons/offs along with thunderous rhythms. Most of the album continuous this way with a root of pretty visceral assailing and all these peripherals there to let the album breathe and expand.
All well and good for the most part, but it seems just a little played out, a little regurgitated. Don’t get me wrong, “Crush, Kill And Burn” is wholly enjoyable if you want some run-of-the-mill contemporary DM that satiates most of the need for an aural bludgeoning, but that only goes so far these days. A nice moment is the opening channel switching riff of “Insalata Tarantula," right to left, then both guitars combining with a fine, crunchy palm-muted groove.
While it clocks in at just over 42 minutes, the album feels far too long. Had the band pared down the 12 tracks to at most eight or nine, the record may have had more impact and leave you wanting more. Instead it feels saturated with songs too similar and offering too little variation track to track. “Crush, Kill And Burn” isn’t bad or ever poor, just overdone both in its genre and own length. I couldn’t get my hands on any of the previous work by the German band, but they do have enough talent and elements to make me want to hear more of them, with the hope it doesn’t drag like this most recent effort. Never throw away a full person, and I think the same about DEBT OF NATURE, and hope with their next endeavour, they trim down and include a slight variation per song.
(Online September 19, 2011)