In the second half of 2017, slam continues to make a comeback. Djent and metalcore are long dead, and though metal has almost completely fallen from the face of popular music, certain scenes have shown a tremendous resurgence. Brutal death metal may be the most reanimated of all; Broken Hope just released Mutilated and Assimilated, their second album since reforming in 2012, and Cephalotripsy have returned from hiatus, currently touring with Incinerate through the Southwest. The emergence of talented new artists is also continuing, and France’s Dysmorfectomy stand out as one of the more promising bands to follow.
Dysmorfectomy is the solo project of Anthony Guern, bass guitarist for melodic death metal group Dawn Of Might. After self-releasing Dysmorfectomy’s debut album Rapist Of Flesh last year, the follow-up full-length has now arrived, courtesy of Reality Fade Records. It’s pleasing to see an album’s title reflected in its cover art, and Hypothermal Dissection provides just this satisfaction: smashed cryo-pods surround an icy scene of disfigured, dying humans and cybernetic viscera. Judging from the frost on that lower-right corner nipple, it’s pretty cold out there.
There’s little filler on this half-hour record; the horror movie intro soon yields to blastbeats and punishing slams, adequately setting the table for what’s to come. The drumming quickly becomes the driving force on the album, always anticipating and complimenting the guitar playing. These sound like live drums, but if not they’re certainly programmed well. Each song has an elaborate structure with tempo changes, breakdowns, and vocals ranging from standard death growls to low-pitched pig squeals. There are plenty of chugging guitars, with enough technicality to keep things interesting.
“Perversion Of Corpses” is characteristic of the album’s no-nonsense style. The guitar track syncs perfectly with the drumming, and the breakdown halfway through feels completely natural. Then bass drum returns, and soon it’s back to blastbeats and slams. Though the song structure is less complex than that of penultimate track “Visceral Preservation,” it still conveys the brutality and hatred that informs this album.
Hypothermal Dissection is a meticulously thought-out release that showcases its creator’s intuitive sense of composition. While never straying too far from the modern slam formula, each song is a competent work that stands on its own. The novelty of Dysmorfectomy being a one-man band is overshadowed by the technicality and nuance demonstrated on this album. Here, indeed, is another fine example of brutal death metal’s renaissance. May it proceed like an ever flowing stream.