This is the fifth album from Coffins, a death metal band from Japan.
I haven’t caught up with Coffins since 2015’s Craving to Eternal Slumber, but of course this highly prolific band have been busy since then on a number of releases. Beyond the Circular Demise is their latest full length, delivering 43 minutes of doom-infused death metal.
Coffins have always been adept at what they do, and this new material is no different. Playing old-school death metal blended with doom darkness, the songs are crushingly heavy and murderously foul. Full of grimly enticing riffs and the sort of authentic songwriting that manifests easily in the enjoyable music that they’ve given us here, these new songs snarl and bark with threatening might.
Slow, malevolent guitars and rolling, destructive groove are your primary guides across Beyond the Circular Demise. That’s not to say that the band don’t speed up their assault on occasion; they do, and quite effectively, but it is the slower, groovier parts where they really shine darkly. However, I’d argue that overall the death metal elements are more prevalent on this release than on some of their previous outings. The music is still a death/doom hybrid, but leans a little more to the former rather than the latter, at least in places. In others, of course, it’s very doom-heavy, (and very heavy doom).
Infrequent use of macabre melody further enhances the songs as well, leading to some of my favourite moments on the album, actually. Sludge and punk elements can also be heard in the music here and there too, although these aren’t dominant parts of the Coffins sound. It all adds to the rotting tapestry that the band weave though, allowing them to get dirty and gritty when they desire.
Cataclysmic and ugly, Beyond the Circular Demise is a very enjoyable trip into the Coffins underworld.