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Benighted: Carnivore Sublime

Brummie bruisers born to grind and built to blast

After nearly 30 years of brutality and blastbeats, diehard underground metalheads may find themselves a little desensitised to the notion

There is something wonderfully exhilarating about the way this French quintet launch into every song, driven forward by seemingly inhuman percussive feats and substantiated by riffs of sublime but grotesque catchiness. As with 2011’s Asylum Cave, Carnivore Sublime doesn’t rely solely on speed and aggression – there is much atmosphere here too, not to mention an authentic sense of psychopathic unease.

More importantly, perhaps, there’s a strong sense of songs being crafted and refined, as if the simple act of being a ferocious death metal band isn’t quite enough of a challenge and that bending the rules to suit their own twisted desires has enabled Benighted to mosh gracefully on their chosen genre’s skin-flaying cutting edge. Put bluntly, this will wrench your fucking face off.

Dom Lawson has been writing for Hammer and Prog for 14 intermittently enjoyable years and is extremely fond of heavy metal, progressive rock, coffee and snooker. He listens to more music than you. And then writes about it.