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A good friend of mine has a fitting way of describing this kind of death metal. It’s like a giant machine rolling along and just grinding, crushing, and smashing everything in it’s path. It’s like an endless rotation of gears and spikes rumbling its way through rocks, trees and earth. I think that’s an excellent way to portray the vibe of Necrot‘s new album, Lifeless Birth.

To my ears, the band embodies a few influences very clearly, at least on this album. There’s the grim resign of Autopsy, the crushing power of Grave, the oppressive force of Vader, and the overall feeling you get when listening to bands like Master, Krisiun, and Obituary. It’s a very meat-and-potatoes sort of death metal: not too much blasting, not a lot of super-technical flair, but lots of cool riffs and crunchy grooves.

The album begins with the almost regal-sounding “Cut the Cord,” which plays like the entrance music to a procession of demons into Satan’s grand hall. The song sets tone of the album perfectly with swirling riffs, strong gutturals, and a solid palette of heavy rhythms. This sets the stage well for the extra-energizing “Lifeless Birth” and positively punishing “Superior.”

And then the band slows things down a bit for a harsher burn on “Drill The Skull.” This is the song that gets the pit really intense I’d imagine: a circle pit surrounding the barely controlled violence in the middle. The band definitely intended this to be the centerpiece of the album, which you can also tell by its selection as one of the singles.

The whole album displays a proficiency in creating high-quality death metal, but I’m especially partial to the last few songs. “Winds Of Hell” hews a little closer to the Incantation-side of the house, along with some notes that recall some of the Finnish masters. The ultimate standout track may be “Dead Memories,” however, as it’s the one that diverts the furthest from the formula of the rest of the album.

Necrot is one of the most-hyped death bands of the last 10 years, and this album gives you a good idea why. Everything here comes together as a modern death metal composition should. In one sense that gives it a bit of perfectibility, and the production doesn’t allow for as much grit and fire as I tend to go for. But a lot of fans of straightforward death metal will find much to love here.

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