Benighted – Necrobreed (Review)

BenightedBenighted are a French death metal band and this is their eighth album.

Benighted impressed the Hell out of me when I managed to catch them live supporting The Black Dahlia Murder, (whose singer guests on this album), so it’s with a palpable sense of excitement that I press play on Necrobreed. After a typically throwaway intro, the rest of the album is like a brutal death metal fan’s wet dream.

Mixing old-school authenticity with new-school know-how and delivery, Necrobreed takes the best elements of classic death metal and uses them to help shape the band’s otherwise modern approach to blistering brutality. Grindcore influences can also be heard in their sound, bringing an element of controlled mayhem to the songs.

These tracks are brutality incarnate. More than that though, here’s a band that knows how to shape this brutality into memorable songs that are far more catchy than anything this ferocious has any real right to be. The blasting drumming, groovy guitars, thundering breakdowns and ample heaviness all focus the mind on what’s really important for this type of music…savagely dismembering your enemies with as much sonic violence as possible.

Well-written, well-performed and well-realised; the band’s sense of structure, flow and dynamics is finely honed, resulting in songs that really do know how to wield their blood-covered weapons. Never falling into the trap of using one method of assault for too long, the various speeds, riffs and vicious moods demonstrate a band that know their style well and how effective it can be when done right. There’s even the odd moment of dark atmosphere that’s allowed to peek into the carnage now and again, reminding you that Benighted are capable of more than just garden-variety brutality.

The vocals are very impressive. Mainly delivered in screams, growls and guttural pignoise grunts, the singer’s voice is as satisfying as it is belligerent. Top marks that man!

The production does the album justice, with a crushing recording that shows the band off in the best way. With songs and music as strong as those that you’ll find on Necrobreed, it’s pleasing that the recording doesn’t drop the ball.

This is a relentlessly punishing album, with no respite as the band put in 100% effort all of the way through the sub-40 minute running time. Extremity is the only direction that these miscreants know how to go in; as the result is an album as deranged and fierce as Necrobreed, I’m glad that this is the case.

Benighted have more than delivered the goods here. They’ve managed to successfully recreate the feeling of violent energy that they had when I caught them live, only even more so, as here it shines through crystal clear and twice as heavy.

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