To actually be just one genre nowadays is pretty difficult, especially with the rise of the sort of Bandcamp generation that is hell-bent on creating new tags daily which latterly become sub-sub-sub genres. Really it’s all a bit crazy but I love it, it makes people more attuned to what they are listening to and increases the overall ethos of experimentation and influence. All this said though you do sometimes want to just sit down and ask no questions with a bog standard single genre release, something so pure it is untainted by even the slightest influence.
That’s where Mass Infection come in these Greek Brutal Death Metallers have taken no notice of other genres since their inception in 2003. My first introduction to the band came through the 2009 release The Age Of Recreation an album which I now hold in pretty high regard as far as a pure Brutal Death Metal sound goes. This album was then followed by 2014’s For I Am Genocide another enjoyable release that had me eager for more. Fast forward now to 2018 and the release of Shadows Became Flesh the latest full length from the band put out through Comatose Music.
The first thing I noticed on Shadows Became Flesh was the production value, there seems to have been a real increase in quality there which leads to the slightly melodic guitar riffs being given an extra punch. I want to describe this release as modern yet with old school essences, and by that I mean that it sticks to what it knows. Mass Infection once again deliver thriving, vibrant Brutal Death Metal that isn’t Slam or in the least bit Deathcore. Instead we are given a purist view of Brutal Death Metal that is so plain to see, a more extreme version of your average Death Metal record.
Don’t let the level of extremity put you off though, as previously mentioned this album doesn’t lack melody or musicianship. In fact almost every track has clear yet evil sounding guitar work and technical hard hitting drumming. Most notably Ominous Prevision, Oath To Nothingness, and instrumental track Spiritual Entropy stand out most to me. Vocally Shadows Became Flesh is once again very standard, no fancy pig squeals but instead a more down trodden tone perhaps akin to Incantation a sort of sound that for some reasons makes me think of the recitation of ancient spells and curses, a strange yet apt image for this chaotic record.
Really there isn’t all that much that is special about Shadows Became Flesh, there aren’t any breathtaking new themes exhibited this is simply a damn fine record. To me that shows a great deal of talent, the scene is flooded with carbon copies but quite how Mass Infection seem to stand out amazes me, they really have an ear for classic Death Metal and Brutal Death Metal ideals that is second to none. Although you could argue Shadows Became Flesh is a little generic it is equally thoroughly enjoyable and I think anyone with a respect for Death Metal will find pleasure through this record.
(8/10 George Caley)