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VIRAL LOAD: BRUTALIZED BEYOND BELIEF
another slab of Texas Death Metal, a scene quickly getting notoriety.
It doesnt have a definitive sound just yet, unless DYING FETUS worship
has their brushes with the DYING FETUS sound, particularly in the first
couple of tracks. This is misleading, as the later tracks are careful
not to merely duplicate DF. The originality factor isnt so pronounced,
but you can tell theyre at least working on that.
features their "Severed Immunity" demo, making for over fifty
minutes of material. VIRAL
is comprised of Shawn Whitaker (guitar, back-up
vocals, drum programming), Joe McGuire (bass),
and vocalist Donny Hamilton. The drum machine has a reasonably natural
sound, not too distracting. The blast sections sound human, though impossibly
fast programming down the line wouldnt hurt. "Bashed Fucking
Skull" is the opener, and the similarity to the DYING FETUS song
"Blunt Force Trauma" doesnt stop at the title.
of high-end technicality is instantly recognizable, along with the more
mosh-riff laden sections. "My Mighty Sword" relies mostly on
being heavy, which doesnt sustain for all five minutes of the song,
but not bad. "Mesmerized by the Bloodstained Walls" begins the
exodus away from the DYING FETUS resemblance, more standard death sounding
with sudden blast segues. The more varied vocal style is noteworthy, though
the higher vocals could use some fine tuning; theyre not much more
effective than Chris Barness. "Galloping Upon the Entrails
of the Dead" stands out as one of the more focused brutal endeavors.
Its a good start from the self-proclaimed purveyors of "Backwods
Brutality," indicative of a willingness to improve. As it stands
it has some things to offer on its own and stays interesting enough even
when it doesnt.
review copyright 2000 E.C.McMullen Jr.
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