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Hogslayer: Defacer

Baleful sludge metallers get too methodical in their torture

From beneath verdant Welsh valleys burbles the vehemently negative viscosity of Hogslayer’s second album, Defacer. For an outfit that only formed in 2012, the Cardiff quintet display a remarkably consolidated vision.

A squeal of feedback heralds the onset of the oddly detached, unhinged ranting of vocalist Lord Bastard, formerly of Shaped By Fate, here eschewing the freneticism of his former outfit for a sound more straightforwardly predatory, the sonorous sludge of Slowhawk beset with the gradual onset of eerie atmospherics.

Despiser demonstrates the reverence with which the riff is treated throughout the record, each song held within the thrall of one slab-heavy, solid groove after another.

The advancing drone of dreadnought Burn Them Out and Bastards Of Reality provide much needed, if only slight variations on a theme, but an overall lack of diversity in combination with a lengthy run time challenges the attention span, as the band slavishly stick to a groove that is in danger of becoming a rut.