Asphalt Graves – The New Primitive album review

Deathgrind supergroup Asphalt Graves long for blastbeats of yore on new album

Asphalt Graves album cover

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Just like Bloodbath’s tribute to the Stockholm death metal scene, this collaboration of former and current members of GWAR, The Black Dahlia Murder and Misery Index to name a few, has all the pedigree needed to pay homage to the death/grind pioneers of the turn of the 90s.

Everything from the crusty sleeve, the 13 songs played in 24 minutes and the venomous lyrical doctrines of Stop Resisting and Mass Graves are fine testimonials, but even though the overall feel is one of nostalgic fun, the ferocity of Jason Netherton’s vocals and exemplary musicianship ensure that The New Primitive is delivered with clinical precision and a fair capacity of creative nous too. Drummer Shannon Lucas is particularly impressive, propelling the d-beat snarl of Negative Future and grooves of Scapegoat with aplomb. The title track heads off at a neck-snapping pace before indulging in some melodic refrains, while the frenzied 30-second blast of Let It Burn is almost the polar opposite of sprawling closer Exit From Reality, that stabs with blastbeats and chokes with lurching riffs.

Rugby, Sean Bean and power ballad superfan Adam has been writing for Hammer since 2007, and has a bad habit of constructing sentences longer than most Dream Theater songs. Can usually be found cowering at the back of gigs in Bristol and Cardiff. Bruce Dickinson once called him a 'sad bastard'.