A smothering which denies a breath to be stolen and light to pierce its intensive tsunami of voracious intent, For I Am Genocide from Greek death metallers Mass Infection is an immediate treat which just gets better and stronger the more time given to its infestation of ears and imagination. On first encounter the immediately impressive and compelling release is a brutal persuasion which does not leap out as something particularly unique in the grand scheme of extreme metal but as with all releases a concentrated focus needs to be given to which in this case the rewards are rich and full. That is not to say that For I Am Genocide stands alone in the torrent of equally rapacious bands and releases but it definitely has an individualism to its character and striking creativity which is contagiously refreshing.
Released via Comatose Music, Mass Infection’s third album pushes the Livadia quartet into a richer and more intensive spotlight to that already earned by their previous releases. Formed in 2003 the band has been a constant attraction for their technically resourceful and barbarous sound, taking influences from band such as Deeds of Flesh, Hate Eternal, and Severe Torture into their own exploration. Their sound is a brutal engagement and as their previous albums alone have shown the band is able to strip senses and emotions bare with barbaric efficiency. Both Atonement for Iniquity and The Age of Recreation left a formidable mark for the band in presence and sound which made anticipation towards For I Am Genocide more than eager, and it is with this impressive release where it is easy to feel the band’s time to step into the higher echelons of metal is nigh.
There is no initial coaxing or gentle persuasion from the album, opening track Praised By All the Entities charging the ramparts of the senses with flailing riffs and ravenous rhythms heading the onslaught. Their voracious appetite is an immediate unveiling but shaped by a precision and intent which puts accuracy before barbarity. The equally antagonistic guttural vocal squalls rigorously enhance the venomous suasion, their scowling touch strong if not dramatically gripping but adding another coarse texture to join the violating sonic prowess and intrusiveness of the band. It is a masterful magnetic start to the album setting appetite and imagination alight with hunger.
The pestilential rapaciousness of The Scourge of Living Forms is next to aggressively embrace the ears, the track a maelstrom of craft and malevolence which is as exhaustive as it is primordially infectious. The mouthwatering grooves as in most songs do the true enslaving so the vicious rhythmic enterprise and vocals causticity can cast their insidious web. It results in a threat and corruption which buckles knees and destroys emotions but leaves full satisfaction and committed temptation in its wake, an evocation covering the whole of the album as shown by the similarly corrosive Hierarchy of the Highest Abomination. The song is a plague of insatiable riffery and rhythmic disorientation speared by acidic strikes of sonic lures which entwines toxic bait around the ears. Again it is a captivating abuse though the track does reveal the issues, though minor, which prevent the album being thought of as a classic. Not for the last time there is a repetitious element across songs, here incestuously bred grooves from its predecessor making admittedly appealing but openly obvious calls. Such their potency and of other examples like it, this does not deflect from the might of the album but does help that inability to stand aside from the crowd, as does the surface similarity of violence which enslaves the senses making that intensive investigation essential to discover the deep rooted ingenuity.
Beholding the Throne suffocates the body next, its darker throat of sound and breath a predatory consumption matched by bile driven heavy vocals whilst its successor Unearthly Legion continues the hellacious blight of merciless rhythmic cruelty and horde like attack of riffs and grooves. It also infuses a veining of sonic pathogenic like tempting which ignites further fierce flames in the passions. Both tracks leave body sapped and imagination, not to forget appetite greedy, a lustful want easily sufficed by firstly the asphyxiating malicious web of intensity sculpted by Maelstrom of Endless Suffering and then the hateful depths of Beyond Perpetuation, a track which ensnares, tenderises, and devours the senses before taking them on a hellacious descent into the darkest pit of the album within a soundtrack of crippling rhythmic skill and sonic malefaction.
Nihilism Reigns is a glorious sonic scourge of melodic intent envenomed by addictive toxic seduction which leads the listener blissfully into the closing transgression of the body by The Genocide Revealed, a last drowning within carnivorous intensity and grooved spitefulness sculpted by the band’s expert individual skills honed into one irresistibly hostile trespass. It is a superb end to an even more immense release. Mass Infection with For I Am Genocide has not set new benchmarks for death metal but without doubt provided one of the highlights of extreme and creative enmity for the year so far.
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