I don’t know about you, but I’m genetically predisposed towards some kind of Pavlovian response when faced with a death metal band called Extremity flaunting an album entitled Extremely Fucking Dead. And, frankly, if a package like that doesn’t pique your interests, then you, sir, are a swine and a cad, and no friend of mine. Composed of current and ex members of acts as diverse as Agalloch, VholVastum and Repulsion, this debut acts as a retrospective of old school death metal riffing. By now you all know our credo on super groups, but thanks to Extremity‘s composite experience, instead of attempting to re-forge the classics, which, at this point is surely tantamount to throwing lipstick on a pig, the band opted to lovingly swaddle their influences and be satisfied to bask in that legacy with as much exuberance as possible.

Despite the cover art and creepy horror sample of the intro track (Pet Cemetery), which both had me prepped for some serious None So Vile worship, Extremity actually play a heady combination of blunt Swedish death with the overt memorability of the early Floridian scene. Guitarist and frontman, Shelby Lermo, alternates his vocal style between gruesome lows and, purposefully I suspect, a Schuldiner-esque retch. He also maintains his Vastum guitar habits, keeping his tone positively drenched in reverb. “Crepuscular Crescendo” grinds in and out of an ungodly collection of riffs, cycling between the rudimentary bludgeoning of Severed Survival Autopsy and the comparative precision of Leprosy era Death. Drummer extraordinaire, Aesop Dekker, as vorpal and meticulous as ever, steers each track with as much restraint as abandon, so when his style flits between effortless blasting and kinetic d-beating, it’s never without warrant.

Not since Beneath the Remains have I heard such a resolute will to shoehorn as many great guitar lines as possible into each song; as such Extremely Fucking Dead is never afraid to change its attack pattern mid-track. “Bestial Destiny,” which spends the majority of its short life proudly plundering the Bolt Thrower war-chest, abruptly changes at the halfway point with a gothic bridge, slathered with skin-crawling tremolos. If there is one thing that Extremity doesn’t shy away from, its the wealth of songwriting experience coursing through its piecemeal veins. There is doubtless no originality in the design of the material, but the effortless quality of the execution chokes out the potential revivalist tag threatening to stick in the craw. The expertly wrought and exceptionally titled “Chalice of Pus” spends just over 6 minutes juggling abrasive blasting, Swedish engineered riffage and passages of sombre doom – if nothing else, it raises a goblet (of gore) to all your favorite death metal tropes and unintentionally outstrips the majority of those legacy bands’ current efforts.

If there was one complaint I could fairly level at this rotten platter, it’s this: where’s the fucking rest of it?! Extremity‘s debut is, in fact, a mini LP, its dark flame sputtering out at a meager six tracks, with one being the intro… Call me greedy, call me impatient, but after the insanely catchy and delightfully oxymoronic “Fatal Immortality,” only the title track remains, and having partaken of the Zombie’s drug, one finds oneself wanting more… Even the production beckons, with Lermo and second guitarist, Marissa Martinez-Hoadley’s grimy strings at the front of the mix, trading depraved riffing and trilling solos.

Extremely Fucking Dead is extremely fucking good and caters, unashamedly and exclusively, to us atavistic gore hounds. If your concept of death metal lies in the pro-tools studio wizardry of every guitar tech’s wet dream, the you will doubtless miss the point Extremity are so irrepressibly hammering home. If you miss the days when even the heaviest music was more hook laden than it had any business being, then this is the record for you, full of bile, belligerence and mystery musical secretions. Extremely Fucking Dead is a sloppy love letter to death gone by and wears its telltale heart still beating on its sleeve. If you don’t listen to this and find yourself skipping down whatever sunny road you live on, singing loud and proud for all to hear the refrain of the title track, then shame on you. Shame. On. You.


Rating: 3.5/5.0
DR: 8 | Format Reviewed: 320 kbps mp3
Label: 20 Buck Spin
Websites: facebook.com/extremedeath
Releases Worldwide: April 7th, 2017

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  • Eli Valcik

    Reminds me of temple of void but more on the deathy side

  • AlphaBetaFoxface

    this album is hilariously death metal. i can definitely see myself showing this one to people who want to know what death metal sounds like.

  • One of my favorite albums to come out of 2017 so far.

    • André Snyde Lopes

      Super off-topic but I remember you mentioning them in your reviews previously: have you listened to the latest Heretoir album?

      • Yeah, I did. Love Substanz but couldn’t make it past the first track on The Circle unfortunately. Ended up passing the review onto somebody else who I felt would give the album a fairer review than I could.

      • Reese Burns

        I liked the newest album. For a while, I really couldn’t make up my mind about Circle, and while it doesn’t stand up to Substanz, and certainly not the self-titled, I enjoy it for what it is. If I were a reviewer, and I’m not, I’d give it a 3.0.

  • AngryMetalBird

    Oh this is SO MUCH FUN!! Thumps up!

  • The Unicorn

    Your review has me sold before a note is listened. And 50% hotness in the band to boot.

    • Internal Decay

      Hmm are you sure about that someone in that photo is not as they seem

      • Frost15

        Yeah, if I remember right one of them is a trans. Nothing wrong with that though…

        • A Feed From Cloud Mountain

          I for one enjoy surprises.

          • I for one believe that some gifts are best left unwrapped!

          • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

            You’ve just knocked it out of the park!

      • The Unicorn

        *gulp*

  • Westpaceagle

    Late to the party on this after seeing the pre-release promos and shrugging it off. But you, Ferrous, have shamed/inspired me to abandon my evil ways and give it a earnest listen. Skipping down sunny roads TBD

    • Ferrous Beuller

      To quote the right honourable Jake “The Snake” Roberts:
      “Trussst me”.

      • Westpaceagle

        Jake the Snake is nothing if not honorable

  • ashcindersmoke

    I’ve been in a Nile/Deicide/Sinister kick lately so yeah, I’m lovin it

  • Sean Sky

    Seeing the title I was actually ready to hate this completely. Was expecting just another lame deathgrind / gore band with nothing interesting. However, this shit is awesome. The riffs! The solos! The brutality! The production!

    • It’s quite tasty.

  • André Snyde Lopes

    Attach Vhol to any review and I’m compelled to check out whatever it refers to, no matter how tangential.

  • rumour_control

    Great conclusion and read. Thank you.
    “…full of bile, belligerence and mystery musical secretions. Extremely Fucking Dead is a sloppy love letter to death gone by and wears its telltale heart still beating on its sleeve. If you don’t listen to this and find yourself skipping down whatever sunny road you live on, singing loud and proud for all to hear the refrain of the title track, then shame on you.”

  • Am I the only one that thinks the album cover looks like a Dead Congregation record?

    • Ferrous Beuller

      I just couldn’t get None So Vile out of my head every time I looked at it.

      • You sir are absolutely right.

        • Ivan E. Rection

          But in the end, winner of the “decapitated heads” album cover contest will always be Pungent Stench ‘Been Caught Buttering’

          • Tom Busler

            And it was only one head!

  • Grymm

    This is scratching that fun, old-school death metal itch just nicely.

  • Thatguy

    That’s what I’m talking about!

  • Reese Burns

    I like be titles like this. “Extremely Fucking Dead”, “Satanic Warmaster”, “Black Fucking Cancer”, “Pure Holocaust”. They all just scream metal in the most loveable way.

  • You wot m8?

    Scanning first paragraph, only to see both Agalloch and Vhol namedropped. Click on video, get Swedeth… k

  • herrschobel

    you sir are becoming my favourite reviewer on this site…great intro lines and overall worthwhile review….great music as well…like a good old Horros classic…nothing new but with all the best ingredients

    • Ferrous Beuller

      Considering the pool of writing talent at this site, that’s a fantastic compliment – thank you!

  • I think album titles like this are fantastic, but then the music leaves me flat. I really dig this one listening to it this morning, though, and I think it’s the power of the riff!

  • ElectricEye

    If you are interested and I am allowed to post this, Amazon has the MP3 download for $4.99.

  • De2013

    Great review. Expected a strong 4 actually though. This record is just epic.

    • I may be inclined to agree with you.

      • Ferrous Beuller

        Fight me!

    • Sean Sky

      Yeah, this is probably a 4 for me.

  • Jeff Manteiga

    Loving this MLP. Strong whiffs of Carcass, Bloodbath and Bolt Thrower! Also…Aesop is killing it with the cymbal-work on “Bestial Destiny.” =]

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    If there’s any music genre for which throwing lipstick on a pig would be a good idea, it’s Death Metal.

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    “Atavistic gore hounds” would make a great band or album name.

  • SuzyC

    Shelby used to write (at an insane pace) an outstanding blog “Illogical Contraption” about 10 years ago. It was my #1 morning read before work every day for a good two years.

  • contenderizer

    Damn, thanks for the heads up, Ferrous! I’d noticed the cover on the 20BS page, but for whatever reason hadn’t bothered to check the band out. Fantastic album – the most straight-up entertaining OSDM release I’ve heard in quite a while. Then again, with the talent present, my approval was all but guaranteed in advance.