'Hideous Rot', the debut MCD from Philadelphia's Masada, is destined to be one of those albums you will either other love or hate; it is very different, wildly eclectic but decidedly fascinating. The band consists of current and former members of Immolation, Goreaphobia, Crucifer and Rellik.
It's death Metal, very unpolished and at times aggressive but with an interesting twist to it in the form of a slight progressive, technical edge to the construct, also although only consisting of five tracks and spanning just fifteen minutes it is packed with some unusual riffs and some pretty weird harmonies which manage to work so well together.
Vocally Cazz delivers a pretty generic death Metal growl, but it is well executed and anything else would be too much next to the complex guitar and drum work and his vocals also serve to garnish and enhance the instrumentation rather than being a focal point.
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The two older of the tracks were recorded as a four piece with drummer Craig Smilowski (ex Immolation, ex Goreaphobia, Rellik,) and bassist Matt Dwyer (Rellik) and were originally featured on the 'Suffer Mental Decay' demo; the drum heavy 'Suffer Mental Decay', with rasping vocals that rip through you, a dark and sinister track with strong progressive overtones, and 'Toxic Unreality' pounding and intense with some unusual riff patterns worked into the construct and a wonderful hollow echo to the vocals. Of all of the five the tracks, I liked these two the best.
The three new tracks were recorded as a two piece with vocalist Cazz 'The Black Lourde of Crucifixion' Grant (Crucifier) covering drum duties and band founder and guitarist Chris Milewski covering bass; 'Hideous Cerebral Pulp' has chugging riffs that rise and fall, a track with a great edge of the seat horror feel to it.
'Exist To Riot' has a dark, sinister and intense progressive edge to its sound. These two tracks almost seem to flow together; on the first few listens I actually didn't realise the track had changed.
There is also one wild card track, 'Fluteotherapy', a highly bizarre, yet fascinating, almost instrumental contribution from Clive Jones of The 70s occult rock band Black Widow. I did find it a little odd that this was included being so far removed from the other tracks but this is an unusual MCD.
I think overall this is a pretty good album, it's certainly unusual and it demonstrates a lot of potential for future longer endeavours. Not a bad way to spend fifteen minutes of your time.