Saturday, 28 June 2014

Skinfather – ‘None Will Mourn’ (Album Review)


Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 22/4/2014
Label: Streetcleaner Records

Skinfather – ‘None Will Mourn’ track listing:

1). Ordeal by Fire 03:34
2). Drown in Black 03:43
3). Born of Despair 02:36
4). Hellish Grave 04:19
5). Atraxia 02:14
6). Dead Still 04:07
7). Calloused 02:46
8). Planes of Ruination 02:55
9). Impaled 04:31

Bio:

Brandishing a name inspired from one of the genre’s best bands in their prime, Dismember, the fairly new outfit, SKINFATHER,is unapologetically heavily inspired by the act and their fellow 1990’s Stockholm counterparts, delivering an only slightly modernized version of what that scene’s infinitely influential early supply of death metal provided. With a slick, antagonistic approach, SKINFATHER has decimated audiences around their locale over the past three years, having released several singles and EPs. Now in 2014, the band is taking it to the next level on both the live and release fronts, with new tour actions and the news of their debut LP now upon us.

On April 22nd, SKINFATHER will release its debut album, None Will Mourn, on 12” LP via Todd Jones of Nails’ DIY label, Streetcleaner Records, and on iTunes/Spotify. The album dispatches nine hard-edged hymns delivered with a cool, calculated, cavernous production, but not without an undercurrent of raging insanity buried under the onslaught of downtuned riff devastation. None Will Mourn was engineered by Taylor Young from Nails, and mastered by Brad Boatright at Audiosiege, and features equally bold visual aesthetics courtesy of Raul Gonzalez.

The Band:

Gred Chacon | Bass
Taylor Nichols | Drums
Scott Fahey | Guitars
Anthonie Gonzalez | Guitars
Stephen McCall | Vocals

Review:

Skinfather, So-Cal's finest death metal export return with this brutal slice of aural dismemberment.

Heavier than a tonne of lead, ‘Ordeal by Fire’ conjures up the spirit of Gothenburg, circa 1995, and brings the metal. I have to say, it is a little odd knowing that the band is American... they sound so Swedish! I am not complaining, mind- this is cracking stuff. ‘Drown in Black’ ups the tempo nearer to Motorhead with a cool cyclical riff and then slows things to a bang-your-head pace of the finest order, before that chainsaw guitar lifts the pace again.

The vocals are perhaps an acquired taste - it is not a death growl and not an impassioned screech either and kind of falls mid way between the two. Certainly brutal, but if you are not convinced at first, you will be by the end of the album. ‘Born of Despair’ is just over two and a half minutes of chugging death, complete with faster sections and bass drums rolling to good effect here and there.

‘Hellish Grave’ boasts a foreboding intro and creeping pace- complimented by a tar thick production.
‘Atraxia’ has an unusual and cool build up opening and then gives us two minutes of instrumental doom/death before ‘Dead Still’ kicks in with hammering snare and mid tempo stomping riffs.
‘Calloused’ rings the changes with varying tempos and riffs- lots of ideas. The band bring dynamics to the record in this way- kind of like a smorgasbord of Dismember's career, perhaps, varying from the pacey to the mid tempo and back to the pacey... and all in one song!

‘Planes of Ruination’ is a three minute punch in the face, as subtle as... well, a punch in the face. Brutal and uncompromising, I cannot see how any death metal aficionado would not enjoy this. 

‘Impaled’ stretches to four and a half minutes with a nice guitar lick to start and then doom for the first section. The mid tempo bludgeoning continues thereafter and normal service is resumed with tempos coming thick and even a bit faster. It's good to hear a death metal band NOT obsessed with
“Faster” and instead going for head banging rhythms and brute force.

The album is strong throughout and most definitely quality death metal without the annoying incessant blast-beats that some bands seem to fixate on. Great band, great album. If you enjoy Entrails, Entombed, Dismember, Paganizer and so on you are guaranteed to enjoy this.

Words by: Richard Maw

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