Sunday 19 July 2020

Oxalate/Perpetuated/Blood Spore/Vivisect - 4-Way Split

Labels: Blood Harvest Records

Formats: CD/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 04 Sep 2020


1. Oxalate - Necrotic Descent

2. Perpetuated - God's Assassins

3. Blood Spore - Dreading The Mycelial Mask

4. Vivisect - Extraterrestrial Proliferations

Do you prefer it when I'm productive and writing four/five reviews a week or are you okay with me posting less frequently, like I seem to be doing at the moment? That's the (rather lengthy) question I've been asking myself recently. Maybe nearly 10 years of writing is beginning to catch up with me. Any advice or comments would be greatly received.

I've been lucky enough to get a pre-listen to this new 4-way split release from Blood Harvest Records, showcasing some of the best new US death metal bands currently working their way up from the fetid earth below. Blood Spore, Oxalate, Perpetuated and Vivisect all come from different parts of the US and have been releasing demos and EPs for the last few years. They each contribute one song to this split, which will appear on CD, tape and digital platforms in early September.

You know you’re in for something disgusting and down-tuned as soon as you set eyes on that cover art! Oxalate open the split with ‘Necrotic Descent’ and what you get is instantly hellish death metal with deep growls, old-school tempos and slams as well. There’s thrashing percussion throughout and excellent lead work too. Oxalate set’s the bar high already with a fine display.

Ringing feedback can only mean one thing and Perpetuated’s ‘God’s Assassins’ flashes by in a wave of bass-heavy riffing and snare hits that become mesmerising. Like Oxalate, they also employ screaming leads, but there’s some hardcore-like musicianship hidden within the murky depths of their sound too. Somehow it’s grimmer but that works in it’s favour for sure. Repeat listens are a must!

Following on from those two shorter songs, Blood Spore kicks off the second half with doom/death on ‘Dreading The Mycelial Mask’. It’s of the melodic variety, but only in the riffs and the sound is more European to these ears. Blood Spore nails that gut-wrenching vibe really well and provides the quality to back it up.

Last but not least and also coming from the doomier end of the spectrum in Vivisect with ‘Extraterrestrial Proliferations’. I say this is doomier but actually that’s just down to the atmosphere Vivisect gives off, as they are actually quite technical and more uptempo. After a long instrumental opening, their intensity hits full stride and doesn’t let up. All of the usual trappings are present but are delivered really well. Nasty but quality death metal.

Seemingly 2020 is destined to be know as “The Year of Death” in more ways than one, but mainly for the sheer amount of death metal releases hitting digital/physical shelves. I implore you to snag this split when it’s released in September and to take the time to check out the other releases from all four bands here. If you’re any kind of extreme metal fan, this can’t be ignored.

Nothing is streaming yet but you can pre-order the split directly from Blood Harvest Records here -

Oxalate -

Perpetuated -

Blood Spore -

Vivisect -

Blood Harvest Records -

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