Osiah – Loss Review

Another day, another album called Loss. While some crews take up this tragic mantle with sobriety and melody, Osiah‘s content pummeling you with big “djunz” time and I guess the “loss” is, like, a loss of goddamn peace and quiet. This is a band I inherited from the Spongey One who simply didn’t have the time to devote to deathcore. Shocker, I know. I’ve always been a bit of a deathcore bitch, my iPod Nano in high school populated by the likes of Whitechapel, Carnifex, and Suicide Silence. Always rooting for the bringers of brainless beatdowns, I’m really hoping that our favorite posh concussion-retailers will step up from the unspectacular Kingdom of Lies.

Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed the Englishmen’s second full-length. It brought a breed of deathcore not unlike Aversions Crown or Boris the Blade, blending chug-heavy deathcore with flourishes of technicality. However, as I was bobbing my head along, I was also noticing how similar Osiah are to, uh, everyone. It had its moments of “ooh that’s cool!” but these were nearly all followed by “but (insert deathcore band here) did that first.” Not that there’s anything wrong with listeners being beaten into submission with relentless breakdowns and gravelly growls, but it’s becoming a bit problematic that Osiah has yet to established a unique take on the style. Loss, for all its good, is no exception.

However, if a sonic concussion is your taste, you can expect a healthy dose of it from Loss. Each of the thirteen tracks (minus the useless intro) is rife with dominating deathcore chugs and hellish vocals. Throw some crushing speed and technical tremolos, and Osiah has nearly perfected the art of brutality. Tracks like “Paracusia,” “Terracide Compulsion,” and “War Within Our Walls” are fantastic juxtapositions of brutality and speed, never letting their riffs despond into downtempo early Black Tongue fare. Loss furthermore features two guest vocalists: Jason Evans of Ingested, and Ben Duerr of Shadow of Intent. The former in particular shines beautifully in the slammy title track, taking it to new depths of gurglingly heavy. All of Osiah‘s members regularly showcase professionalism and competence, as vocalist Ricky Lee Roper showcases his formidable range, guitarists Chris Keepin and Andy Mallaby balance chug and technicality, while drummer Noah Plant keeps the percussion interesting. Bassist Carl Dunn is solid, I’m sure, if he were audible.

To be fair, Osiah doesn’t necessarily do anything blatantly offensive, but there are certainly moments of “meh.” Tracks like “Echoes” and “Celer et Audax” dwell too heavily in the downtuned djunz; Ben Duerr’s appearance in “The Eye of the Swarm” is a letdown because of the track’s limp songwriting – it ends up feeling like a Shadow of Intent track sans good songwriting or anything that makes Shadow of Intent songs good. But most damningly Loss is deathcore – very run-of-the-mill deathcore. In this way, Osiah continues to shoot itself in the foot in the same vein as Kingdom of Lies because, frankly, Loss is too easy to compare to other acts. Tracks like “Queen of Sorrow” and “The Ominous Mind” feel like A Night in Texas rip-offs, while “The Second Law” and “Already Lived” channel Boris the Blade – and frankly, those two groups weren’t far off to begin with. Also, Loss offers a whopping thirteen tracks and a nearly fifty-minute runtime, which feels especially arduous given the relentlessness and unoriginality of its content. While Loss has its moments, it always remains planted in the shadow of deathcore’s history.

It feels a tad plagiarizing to come to the same conclusions about Loss that TheKenWord had of Kingdom of Lies, but it ultimately shows how imperative it is that Osiah establish their own identity. Don’t get me wrong, my head was nodding along as my brain was being curb-stomped to mush, but I couldn’t help but notice how similar these Brits are to other deathy breakdown dealers. Ultimately, your feelings about Loss will be dependent on how you feel about deathcore. It’s ridiculously similar to other deathcore albums and it’s far too long. But for those craving a sonic concussion, it’s heavy, fast, and offers deathy slammy goo and technical tweedles to sate your appetite, and its creators are undoubtedly skilled in their field. Deathcore bitches, but deathcore bitches alone: look no further – it would be a Loss to miss out.

Rating: 2.0/5.0
DR: 5 | Format Reviewed: 192 kbps mp3
Label: Unique Leader Records
Websites: osiahuk.bandcamp.com | facebook.com/osiahuk
Releases Worldwide: May 7th, 2021

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