Full Length, February 2012
NWN! Productions/Osmose Productions
'Scum.Collapse.Eradication' was one of the most anticipated albums in 2011 but it saw the light of day only during February 2012 due to numerous delays. But sometimes I prefer to abide by the old proverb which says that - ''patience bears a sweet fruit''.
Although the 'fruit' which this long wait bore was nothing close to being 'sweet' but was in fact ominous and gnarly. I was expecting the album to sound monstrous from the short samples posted on Youtube a few months back and when the NWN! bandcamp posted a full song stream, I knew that something devastative was impending on us. While I was saddened with the unfortunate exit of Pete Helmkamp - one of my favorite frontmen, from the Revenge camp, his departure brought no harm to the integrity and aesthetic of the band. Chris Ross was still there to assist James Read during the album recording and they roped in the malicious Haasiophis from Antediluvian on session bass and backing vocals for live shows. Brutal and stronger than ever.
Now, this has to be the heaviest sounding album which Revenge have ever produced. The mastering task was suavely accomplished by the infamous Necromorbus Studios and they did a great job there. The guitars are high up in the mix and they complement the drum production perfectly. Vocals are appropriately mixed as well, hence complementing the instrumental mix suavely. This filthy juggernaut consists of eight blistering tracks with an overall duration of around 35 minutes and is certainly capable of keeping an alarmed listener hooked to it right from the first track to the end. The first thing which struck me on the album was an apparent death/grind/goregrind vibe a la old Carcass and Last Days of Humanity. Well, this so-called 'bestial black metal' sub-genre has always been a filthy mixture of death/grind and 80's style black metal, so I am not making a 'eureka' statement with the above mentioned examples. But this time, the grind element is more vitriolic than ever and this is what makes this album such a massive splurge of deafening audio violence. The guitar tone is abrasive and absolutely massive, hence manifesting Revenge's trademark wall of sound with panache. Ross has perfectly executed the required style of guitar-play to create the sonic avalanche which engulfs the listener from the very first riff. J.Read has unleashed his trademark gut wrenching shrieks and mixed them with necrotic pitch-shifted gurgled vomits, which really remind me of classic LDoH, and some other typical goregrid. Such was the impact that I was compelled to revisit albums like ''The Sound of Rancid Juices Slashing Around Your Coffin'' and ''Reek of Putrefaction/Symphonies of Sickness'' to appropriately understand my contemplation's.
Furthermore, I was happily surprised to notice the presence of doom-laden riffs on tracks like ''Us and Them (High Power)'', ''Parasite Gallows (In Line)'' and ''Banner Degradation (Exile or Death)'' which are three of the best tracks from the album. Well I shouldn't say that it was really that surprising to me, because the Revenge duo had participated in the Thergothon tribute album entitled as "Rising of Yog-Sothoth", covering ''Elemental'' while the legendary Axis of Advance were still active. So who knows, they might have gotten an urge to experiment with some doom on this album. Although this element is minimally present, it really makes their sound even more brutal and sick.
The strongest highlight on the album is still the triumphant drumming prowess of James ''steamroller'' Read. This man has always had a distinct, trademark drumming style which makes him stand apart from the rest. The rolls/fills executed by him are frenetic and they sound like a bloody earthquake! Mixed with his furious blast-beats, they make a complete package, perfect to give you an eargasm. I have always enjoyed listening to his stellar drumming performances on old Revenge/Conqueror/Axis of Advance albums and he has done the trick once again. The snare/tom sound is absolutely crunchy and organic like always and that has been a great factor in highlighting Read's percussive demeanor.
So, us, minions of Satan can easily comprehend the impact which these deranged Canadians have made through their fourth and probably their most accomplished onslaught till date. I still hail ''Triumph.Genocide.Antichrist'' as my favorite Revenge album, because that was how I was introduced to their might but maybe this opinion can soon change with repeated listens of Scum.Collapse.Eradication. As the name suggests, this album is capable enough of eradicating weak filth with the sepulchral aura which it possesses. It emanates a nauseous odour which reeks of disgust, vileness and an immense hatred for humanity and hence clearly displays the mark of Superion with which Revenge has been conquering the feeble since more than a decade now. This is not just a metal album meant to bang your heads, but this is sheer..revenge and war against the frail. Attain this album, if you share a similar ideology and are seeking a grimy assault of atonal chaos, manifested within black metal.