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Dystrophy: Wretched Host

This album is interested in thematic heights, as the titles "Apex" and "Nadir" suggest. However, these far reaching peaks aren't necessarily triumphant. Instead of achieving the top of a mountain or scoring a winning goal at the last second, the high points here have more to do with the assertive nature of madness, the way it sometimes triumphs over our best notions of self. Even more interesting, though, is the parallel theme of parasitism, as suggested by titles like "Wretched Host" and "Exoparasite." I could simply say that the questions at the heart of this release have to do with identity, madness, and how well they play together. But I think Dystrophy is also considering just what kind of people do all the awful things we've witnessed over the centuries. Are the craziest people the ones who lead us into war, confident that destroying other people is the solution to the world's problems? And who are we to believe their bellicose rhetoric? What does it mean to be a human being during such dark times?

To these interesting questions there are no simple answers. The music on this album gives us some opportunity to reflect on them and to do so in the unique ways extreme metal allows. Unsurprisingly, the music here is heavy and intense, played in the style of bands like Death, Gorguts, Ripping Corpse, and many others. I found the album engaging, perhaps more for the themes than the music on the whole, but the music certainly wasn't bad. I was especially impressed with the songwriting, which was often as complex as the themes, drawing on the strengths of the dual guitars to harmonize, change directions, and perform polished solo passages. I was also impressed with the killer drum parts; frantic and intense, the drums pound out the raging chaos of a mind at war with itself. Check out tracks like "Singularity" and "Anhedonia" for the band at its very best. This is intense and heady materialódefinitely worth a listen.

Track Listing:
1. Apex
2. Singularity
3. Within the Mind
4. Exoparasite
5. Wretched Host
6. Demise
7. Anhedonia
8. Nadir

Added: January 28th 2016
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1392
Language: english

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