Benighted have carved out a niché of their own in the brutal death metal spectrum. The over the top energy, tempo shifts and deranged experimentation has gained them well-earned recognition over the past few years. Many bands in the style only last a few songs for me before everything sounds the same, but Benighted can have me spinning several albums in a row.
“Necrobreed”, no different than usual Benighted
“Necrobreed” shamelessly continues down this path. This is another truly extreme album shock-filled with energy and hooks. Julien Truchen brings his usual arsenal of sounds, from the brutal death metal “bree” to the high shrieks, topped off with macho hardcore screams. He’s probably my favorite singer in the style thanks to how much intensity and variation he brings to the table. His way of crafting infectious vocal lines is also one of the most important parts of the Benighted sound. No songs on any of their albums ends without having a catchy chorus line.
“Asylum Cave”, part 2
The sound on “Necrobreed” is more in the vein of “Asylum Cave” than the predecessor “Carnivore Sublime”. This is a straight-up deathgrind record that delivers blastbeats, hooks and breakdowns with surgical precision. However, it’s not as unpredictable and characteristic as some of their early work. I’m still missing the insane twists and thrash metal influences that were present on “Identisick”.
My standout tracks are probably “Reptilian” and “Der Doppelgaenger”. “Reptilian” is a classic Benighted banger that utilizes a manic mesh of blastbeats and animalistic screams before breaking into a breakdown with a bass drop at just the right moment. These classic tempo shifts are all over the record, and one of the biggest reasons why I love this band so much. “Der Doppelgänger” combines old school Napalm Death influences with clean guitar sections and German vocal hooks. Highly memorable, and very Benighted. “Cum with Disgust” is another crazy song, sporting a vocal tradeoff between Julien and guest vocalist Arno over a bass solo that is truly signature Benighted.
Tight and clean
The production job is professional and clean, and the playing is exceptionally tight, as always. New drummer Romain Goulon’s style is ultra technical and a bit less groovy than previous drummers. The guitars are similar to “Asylum Cave”. We’ve got the modern brutal death metal riffs, the Napalm Death style deathgrind as well as the signature breakdowns. There’s also a healthy dose of lead guitar on this album, ranging from melodies to chaotic noise.
With all this said, I still think that “Necrobreed” fails to measure up to the past five records. It just doesn’t have as many over the top moments where my jaw absolutely drops. This makes the songs fade into eachother a bit. It’s understandable, because they certainly have a high standard to live up to. Even if this is not one of my favorite Benighted records, the band shows no signs of slowing down. There’s really no band that can compete with them in the brutal death metal genre today.