Bent Sea / To Dust – Ascend / Descend (Split)


Devastatingly delightful grind…

Released by Give Praise Records on 1 July 2016 and taken on by Jason Guest

Bent Sea – Ascend DescendWith drummer Dirk Berbeuren quitting Soilwork to take on the job as Megadeth’s current “best drummer we ever had”, Bent Sea might just be on the verge of achieving wider success, relatively speaking of course. With Berbeuren on drums and guitar, Napalm Death’s Shane Embury on bass and Aborted’s Sven de Caluwé on vocals (Aborted’s recent album Retrogore reviewed here), there’s about a million years’ combined grind, death, black and hardcore punk experience in this lineup. Five tracks between 25-seconds (‘Caged Cruelty’) and four-minutes long (‘Ascend’) focussed on animal liberation and human justice, the lyrical, technical and musical abilities on display here are crushing. Shifting the dynamic from the all-out pummelling to the punishingly death metal dirge, Bent Sea deliver grind at its devastating best. Delightful.


To Dust – Ascend DescendFormed in 2013, Cleveland’s To Dust do it the hard, harsh and vicious way, their ground-up grind, death, punk and hardcore salvo peppered with razor-sharp riffs, chainsaw chords, hammering, battering and brutal drumming, and throat-tearing vocals. Just how we like it. To Dust’s unremitting determination to destroy is reinforced by their ability to take a riff or an idea and give it ample space to develop without falling foul of pointless self-indulgence, ‘Hegemonic Scars’ and ‘Deception Hymn’ in particular both being case in point. Five tracks of ferocity and fire from a bunch of aficionados of the heavy stuff – ex-members of Abigail Williams and The Black Dahlia Murder among their number – what else are we to expect. Lovely stuff.

8 out of 10

Track list:

  1. Bent Sea – To The Extreme
  2. Bent Sea – Caged Cruelty
  3. Bent Sea – Gluttonous Death
  4. Bent Sea – Ascend
  5. Bent Sea – Animals
  6. To Dust – Amaryllis
  7. To Dust – Tumbeiros
  8. To Dust – Deception Hymn
  9. To Dust – The Perspectivist
  10. To Dust – Hegemonic Scars



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