Deformatory - Malediction CoverIt should go without saying that Deformatory are a brutal death metal band, not because you should already be familiar with them – Malediction is only their second release – but because of their moniker. Good band names aside, these up-and coming Ottowans have a lot going for them, and Malediction proves their worth in a pretty scattershot genre. While this year’s release schedule for brutal death looks promising, including Wormed and Omnihility, at some point, fans of the genre shouldn’t pass up this album’s wealth of engaging brutality.

Nothing about Malediction contradicts your expectations; it starts with a sample, it ends with a sample, it’s got a few samples in between to break up the guttural growls and general extremity, but the LP is entirely devoid of curveballs. What it does have are solid songs built around memorable riffs, and in this genre that’s a godsend. Groovy and melodic riffs pack “Dimensions of Malevolence” full to bursting, negating the jarring one would expect from frequent and abrupt transitions in its second half. “Obsequium” throws even more good and great riffage out there and features a hellish and wailing solo near the halfway point. Though there are plenty of riffs here that could be swapped out with those from Hour of Penance or Omnihility, the band rarely falls into another group’s shadow, and while novelty remains elusive for them, the album remains engaging.

Malediction‘s lack of surprises is both its greatest strength and the most compelling argument against it, musically. The band does everything expected of them and gives just enough extra thought to make the end result enjoyable, but they really do play it safe throughout the album. The most interesting moments are tucked away near the end, like the solo on “Oracles of Perdition” that lead into the dissonant introduction of the pick-scrape loving “Apothic Existence.” While I can really get behind these songs in the moment, none of the writing or performances really wow me, which goes to show just how essential a high level of technical skill is to this type of music. Malediction‘s riffs aren’t any slower than those from Origin, and from a performance standpoint this album is certainly up to par.

Deformatory 2016

Things sound slightly less grating than I expected and despite long songs and a pretty smashed production job, it’s easy enough to listen to once or twice through, since the band cleverly kept the length down to 37 minutes. My biggest issue is with the drum production. While not Fleshgod-ified, the bass drum sounds awful at high speed when the true depths of triggering become most apparent. Again, this is sadly a very middle-of-the-road production choice, and I can’t fault the band much for doing exactly what’s expected of them; such a complaint throws the entire existence of Malediction into limbo.

I doubt anyone will be truly floored by Malediction, but the album’s riffing propels it out of mediocrity and makes it worth a listen for a noted follower of brutal tech death such as olde Kronos. If you’ve already begun salivating over the promise of Krigsu come March, you can take the time to expel those disgusting excretions with a quick bang of the head over Deformatory‘s commendable effort here.


Rating: 3.0/5.0
DR: 
Format Reviewed: 320 kbps mp3
Label:
CDN Records
Websites: 
deformatory.bandcamp.comdeformatory.ca | facebook.com/deformatory
Releases Worldwide:
February 5th, 2015

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  • Diego Molero

    The second I saw that artwork I knew this one was by Kronos. Great review!

  • madhare

    Video has red, white, and slowly falling snow. I’m totally expecting Santa to pop up and bring presents to all of us!

    • DEATH METAL SANTA ONLY BRINGS DESTRUCTION

      • Gabriel PérezMolphe

        So… Futurama’s Santa?

    • You wot m8?

      Is it really Santa you’re expecting? Hmmm?

  • Oberon

    Safe and predictable for an LP isn’t necessarily a bad thing, from my point of view. I’m just now starting to get into brutal, tech, and grind metal

  • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

    That random guitar outburst at 3:30 in sounds like Donaldson era Cryptopsy to me for some reason. These guys have a good name because it can be growled nicely. Dee-formator-eeeeeeeeeeeee.

    • Guillotine of Papal Crowns

      *Neck-destroying-headbanging ensues*

  • You wot m8?

    Gotta love that Magic: The Gathering cover art!

    • Guillotine of Papal Crowns

      My thoughts exactly.

      • You wot m8?

        Ha, I have that exact card. Great bookmark.

  • Zac Melvin-McNutt

    Solid stuff for sure, definitely very “safe” sounding as far as brutal/tech death goes.

  • Maelstrom

    Great review, as always!

    Listened to the 3 available tracks from this album and I am digging the fuck out of it. They actually have some killer riffs.
    Wished you would have talked about the vocals from these guys. The dude is a beeeeaast!

  • AlphaBetaFoxface

    Scott Rudd’s influence on metal videos is ridiculous.

    Great review dude!

  • Carlos Marrickvillian

    lol band photo… I wonder if they fired the dude on the right for wearing blue jeans and not doing a down nose angry face.
    Listening to the embedded song I agree with your comments about the drum sound, I found it a bit distracting and ultimately detracting from my enjoyment of what seemed like a pretty decent BDM song.