Beaten To Death: Unplugged

Subversive extremity from Oslo’s renegades of raw

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Grindcore has been laudably resistant to contemporary notions of how heavy music should be produced and presented, but few of its exponents have approached the genre with quite the same level of scabrous glee as Beaten To Death do here.

Unplugged is not an acoustic album, thank Satan, but it does showcase the exhilarating potential of snotty, bulbous-eyed grind delivered with maximum venom and zero post-production.

Blasted out in record time in the band’s rehearsal space, violent vignettes like I Keep Stalling, Home Of Phobia and
the mischievous Don’t You Dare To Call Us Heavy Metal adhere to a subtly perverse template that packs in plenty of heads-down blasting while peppering the resultant scree with bursts of insidious melody and enough twists, turns and bellicose sleight-of-hand to raise this way above the generic.

They may be arch piss-takers – witness the comically seething Death To False Grindcore – but BTD’s compositional blade is sharp and insistent. Done and dusted in a deliciously succinct 21 minutes, this is an electrifying flurry of spanners hurled into the grindworks.

Dom Lawson

Dom Lawson has been writing for Metal Hammer and Prog for over 14 years and is extremely fond of heavy metal, progressive rock, coffee and snooker. He also contributes to The Guardian, Classic Rock, Bravewords and Blabbermouth and has previously written for Kerrang! magazine in the mid-2000s.