Formed in Poland in 2019, Satanic death metal band Soulcarrion have already pummelled fans with an impressive album, and now they land a nifty sucker punch with this eponymously-titled extended play, Soulcarrion. Containing four tracks which are both brutally heavy and intrinsically nuanced, this EP pushes at the boundaries of what death metal can be. It’s sure to please the band’s legions of fans, and win them many new converts.
Giving us a hint of what is to follow, the guitar that introduces first cut ‘Path Of Hypocrisy’ is totally evil and descends like a spiral staircase down into the very depths of hell. It makes for a nice preamble, meaning that when the drums kick in, they kick in hard, and that’s indicative of Soulcarrion’s approach. They’re a combo who fully understand musical dynamics, and they don’t feel the need to blast beat all the time; slower sections contrast the fast, and lithe the heavy, with each acting as a foil to highlight and enhance the other. The band’s forward-facing brand of death metal reminds me of classic Morbid Angel, insofar as it is inventive and rule breaking. I like the poly-rhythms employed on this opening cut, they’re positively dizzying and pull the listener in two directions, like a victim stretched on a rack, and when you factor in some tortured vocals, you have a pretty weighty affair.
As with the very best death metal, Soulcarrion is an atmospheric listen with soaring guitars and devastating drumming transporting us to another dimension. That is thanks in no small part to the production which employs the full dynamic range to garner the band a wide and expansive sound, and it’s one the band put to good use on ‘Piles Of Ashes’. Opening like the gates of Hades to reveal all sorts of torment, ‘Piles Of Ashes’ leaps straight at your throat, digs in its fangs, and doesn’t let go over four blood spurting minutes. Little space
between tracks only adds to the feeling of claustrophobia as Soulcarrion bears down upon us with oppressive weight. With an arctic blast of sonic fury ‘Death Revelation’ could rival early Discharge in terms of sonic fury whilst closer, ‘Salvation,’ offers us little in the way of redemption.
Soulcarrion is bursting at the seams with neat ideas, it feels like the band have tried to cram a lot into these four tracks, and while this could have made for a cluttered listen, the result is a multi-textured experience that leave you hungry for more. Just like the dark sleeve in which it is housed (nice work Pawel Pawlowski!) Soulcarrion is rich in symbolism, and will keep you returning again and again.
- Path Of Hypocrisy
- Piles Of Ashes
- Death Revelation