Japan is home to some of the best contemporary brutal death metal there is. From the sludgy slams of Gorevent to the visceral precision of Desacravity and beyond, the country has a proven knack for producing a variety of takes on the genre that are equal parts completely dedicated and completely fucking bonkers. We can now add Nagoya’s Bleedead to the list, as they’ve dropped twelve minutes of spastic, slamming what-the-fuckery in the form of debut EP Mustma Dorcheme.
Twelve minutes may sound like a painfully short running time, but once you hear Bleedead you’ll understand why they decided to keep things short and sweet. Each of these five tracks, none of which run much past the two minute mark, is like a mini cyclone, throwing everything but the kitchen sink at you in an effort to obliterate your senses. Taken as a whole, it’s a twisted mass of triggered-to-hell drumming, dry-as-a-bone guitar crunch, spidery bass lines and some of the most insane vocals I’ve ever heard. To make things even more psychotic, Bleedead keep the tempo set to liquefy when not deploying slams, imparting Mustma Dorcheme with a rubbed-raw, frantic, almost grindcore quality not often found in the genre.
As if all of that isn’t enough, the EP features an incredibly claustrophobic production; the instruments are packed together so tightly that the tones rub up against each other in a most uncomfortable manner, while the vocals desperately attempt to fight their way out of the mix with an arsenal of squeals, screams, grunts and gurgles. It’s a very dry mix that’s maybe mastered a little too hot, but somehow Bleedead make it work in their favor, as the overall nastiness of the sound actually enhances their attack. It’s the musical equivalent of falling into a pit of rusty circular saws.
I’m not sure if there’s such a thing as “outsider slam,” but if there is then Bleedead are surely at the head of the micro-genre, such is the ultra-bizarre, utterly singular quality of their approach to brutal death metal. Only the band themselves know for sure whether or not this is intentional or if they’re natural born weirdos, but one thing is certain; Bleedead are every slam hater’s worst nightmare and every slam lover’s new favorite band. The EP is available now from the fine folks at Gore House Productions on CD or digital download.