Thursday, 4 August 2016

Osiah - Terror Firma (Review by Brett Baker)


Since their inception in the 2012, Sunderland's Osiah have quickly become synonymous with creating a strain of technical deathcore like no other. Known for their disgustingly down-tuned guitars, punishing rhythmic precision and Gatling gun percussion, their debut album was always going to be highly anticipated. Terror Firma was released on June 24th via Siege Music, an independent label based in the UK and US, and blew all expectation out of the water. Seeing the bands already potent blend of slam infested savagery taken one step further. The record itself is a concept album of sorts depicting a world in pandemic, ruthlessly being destroyed by an “immortalising disease”. One with a purpose to destroy all concepts of religion, society and the economy. Ultimately causing the collapse of civilisation and thus forth bringing an end to mankind as we know it. The lyrics recount each evolutionary stage of the disease, from initial contraction and pandemic chaos, to the alteration of human genetics leaving some to combine with the virus. Forming a symbiotic relationship between parasite and host. A very fitting image given the way Ricky Lee Roper constructs his vocals. At times it is as if he becomes a vessel of demonic parasitic evil. Spewing forth sounds that are all together inhuman. Whilst the majority lurks around the bottom end of the spectrum, Ropers use of high inhales and exhales are second to none. Resulting in a style not too removed far from the lows of Alex Teyen spliced with the shrieking squeals and gargles of Steve Maoris.

However, the concept doesn't end in the lyrical department. Everything about this record screams disease and decimation. One thing that stands out straight away is the amount of powerful low end the band produce. On tracks such as The Harvesting and Planetary Infection you can almost hear society imploding and cities collapsing in on themselves. Combine that power with the bands unique way of constructing blistering breakdowns, and you're left with something that'll shake your bones to the core. An impeccable command of rhythm enables Osiah to create riffs that just keep hitting harder and harder. Whether that be suffocating downtempo sections such as those found on Humanimals, Conceived Through Ignorance and HV; or flesh hacking slams, slicing like a butchers cleaver on Brokden and Subterranean Refuge. All infested with short splurges of panic induced shred frenzies.

The level of depth possessed by this record is unbelievable. Every single track is drenched in layer upon layer, resulting in ominous soundscapes seething with misery. Warped guitars, synthesisers and samples create disorientating textures that sound like a disease seeping into the bloodstream, shutting down the nervous system and perplexing the senses. These are occasionally used to transition from one song into the next, connecting the album together as a flowing entity, giving it an overall soundtrack-esque conceptual finish. So if you're after a dose of sinister apocalyptic deathcore, there's no need to look any further than Terror Firma. Osiah have every base covered with such an impressive debut album. Follow the link below to grab your own copy of Terror Firma from Seige Music. Alternatively, you can stream the album via YouTube. This is not a band you should be sleeping on, as this release is already making big waves across the extreme metal community. Make sure you keep an eye on what the lads are up to via their social media and head out to a show near you. Having already destroyed the likes of Techfest this summer, they possess a live show that is not to be missed.

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