There is nothing kind or merciful about With Bared Teeth And Truths, the new EP from UK extreme metallers Triverse Massacre, its title more than hinting at the ferocious and torrid tempest grasping every second of the encounter. It is a formidable and reasonably striking encounter which at times does arguably offer more potential than realised triumphs but still incites a healthy appetite for the Carlisle quintet. From a decent enough yet underwhelming start, the EP emerges as a creatively flavoursome and pleasingly hostile protagonist reinforcing the suggestion set by its predecessor that Triverse Massacre is a band with a potent horizon ahead of them.
Formed in 2010, the band soon earned a strong reputation for their uncompromising sound and fierce stage performances, the sharing of stages with bands such as Aliases, The Sun Explodes, and Meta-Stasis cementing their emerging presence in the UK metal underground. The band has earned comparisons to the likes of The Black Dahlia Murder, Cannibal Corpse, and Slayer along the way whilst debut EP, In The Jaws Of Deceit set a potent base for the band to move on from. With Bared Teeth And Truths is possibly not as big a step forward from that well-received release as expected but certainly evidence of a band on the right course.
The release opens with Wolves At Your Gates, a track which suggests more than it gives. From a raw and brewing tempestuous climate of distressed and pained sounds, rhythms emerge with intensive muscle and riffs with predatory design, all ridden by the excellent insidiously venomous growls of Liam Clark. As the song settles into its purpose and stride there is an expected spark missing, hooks and acidic grooves from guitarists James Graham and Chris Kelsall imposing yet safe in their intensity whilst the rhythms of drummer Mike Collins, aligned to the sinister prowling intent of bassist Dan Fisher, are demanding but also devoid of real viciousness. Whether it is the production or the song itself is a thought continually switching but the track just does not come alive as hoped. The individual craft of the band is impressive and the structure of the track as it tries to intimidate and scar the senses enticing but even with its inventive rabidity there is something amiss and lacking.
The following Exhale Betrayal is instantly a more formidable and threatening proposition, swift grinding riffs rich bait to which rampaging rhythms add their mighty swings. The vocals again squall and squeal with an addictive presence, Clark’s delivery something you suspect will work for some and not others, but for those with a liking for his serpentine abrasing it is a highly pleasing asset of the band and songs. A virulent urgency drives the track as the guitars cast their unpredictable weave over ears and though there also is an incomplete air to the song, it is down to a lifeless production more than anything.
Bullets Kill Beasts opens on a melodic reflection, guitars casting an emotive hue framed by a military bred march of rhythms and a potent throaty bass suasion. Straight away the track brings a new breath and strength to the release, bringing more antagonism and potency to the vocal hostility and winding thrash fuelled grooves as well as the flurries of riffs. The track is soon charging contagiously into the imagination, its twists of ideation and sonically catchy enticements ensuring that With Bared Teeth And Truths is a completely different and now rigorously impressive proposition. The production still mutes some of the strengths of the track but compared to its predecessors it is able to throw off its restrictions to leave a lingering and fully satisfied impression.
The closing Torn From The Throne takes things to another level again, the best track on the EP unleashing a greater physical and aural enmity on the senses and passions. The track simply tears at ears with a brutal predation and bestial rancor, bad blood infectiously flooding its sonic and melodic veining as oppressive weight and severity drives vocals and rhythms. In many ways the EP is one of two halves, the first appealing and full of promise but the second is where the real potential and potency of the band is on show.
Triverse Massacre is gaining a fine reputation as they grow and With Bared Teeth And Truths definitely adds to that but it also seems like a missed opportunity to push the band onto a loftier step within the national metal scene. As said though they are heading in the right direction and more encounters like this, with a deserving production next time, will do nicely.
The With Bared Teeth And Truths EP is available now via http://triversemassacre.bandcamp.com/album/with-bared-teeth-and-truths
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