Label: Cyclone Empire
Distribution: Sure Shot Worx
Release date: June 1st 2012
Dutch act Bodyfarm was formed as a duo (drummer Quint Meerbeek, who used to play in Bloodphemy and Autumnal Reaper before, and guitar player / vocalist Thomas Wouters) only three years ago, but they built up a huge live reputation in, especially, their home country as well as in Germany (with permanent membership of bassist Mathieu Westerveld, who’s also active in Death / Black act Baatezu, and guitarist Bram Hilhorst).
Like their self-called 2010-EP/MCD, Malevolence was recorded at Oerknal Studio (= ‘Big Bang’) with Harry van Breda (who also did the session studio bass parts on that EP, by the way).
Bodyfarm totally lack of originality, but if you appreciate skull-crushing and technically well-balanced Old Skool Death Metal, done the mercilessly Dutch way, then you need to read further.
What this band brings is the essence of the early years’ core business. Bodyfarm’s pulverising and devastating hymns come with those elements that created the scene in its nastiest form. Malevolence is the sonic definition of it. An enormously oppressive pounding rhythm section, gargantuan guitar riffs and gurgling, blood-spitting grunts, it is what made me audible horny twenty five years ago, and still it works.
The main difference with the glorious past might be the enormously positive progression in sound, and in this case the quality of the production is excellent: well-balanced yet, at the same time, enormously rough and buzzing.
The main problem with this recording might be the lack of variation. All right, the tempo changes all the time, and each single song comes with, for example, a guitar solo, yet in general one might miss a little more diversity in between the tracks. A shame for sure…
At the same time, however, Bodyfarm might surprise a couple of time. Not only because of the professional approach, yet also, for example, through compositional excellences à la Tombstone Crusher a.o.
Interesting fact: the Massacre-cover Cryptic Realm, featuring guest vocals by no-one else but Massacre’s Kam Lee himself!
Classic inspiration and tribute, but not a classic to be…
FFO: God Dethroned, Gorefest, early Death / Massacre, Morbid Angel, Grave / Unleashed and this kind of magisterial beauty…