Death metal duo Kontusion add further vicious thorns to their weighty resumes with debut EP

Photo by Aaron Brown

We are at a ridiculous high point when it comes to death metal. It feels like there never has been the amount of bands playing the deadliest sound in metal’s arsenal, and so many are doing it at such a high level that if you can’t find something great in which to indulge, you might not be trying at all. You don’t even have to try hard. Minimal effort and exploration could fill your record shelf.

Kontusion might be a fresh entry into death metal’s heavily populated terrain, but its members—vocalist/guitarist/bassist Mark Bronzino and drummer/synth player Chris Moore—hardly are newcomers to heavy music. Having spent time with bands such as Repulsion, Mammoth Grinder, Iron Reagan, and ANS, the duo has been making ridiculous sounds elsewhere, and on their self-titled debut EP, they prove they, too, have a powerful, entrancing way to create death metal. These four tracks rip by in no time, but while they have your attention, they’re putting their force to good use, proving there is plenty of room to make great death metal, and they’re as capable as anyone else at devastating you.

“Unrelenting Pain” launches with feedback and crushing riffs, the growls feeling muddy and animalistic. The pace just punishes, strange synth melts into the pot, and then a burly return bludgeons and decimates. Things get gritty and brutal as the growls punish, and misery spreads. “Rotting With Sickness” has riffs firing up as the playing crumbles into hell, and the growls warp your brain. Cavernous hell spread as the growls echo and the murk increases, the synth thickening and making your vision cloudy. The soloing burns, the keys glimmer, and sounds drain out into hell. “Blood Church” crushes right away with the drums loosening bricks and complete chaos setting in their claws, the melodies going absolutely nuts. The pace gets fiery and frantic, and the drubbing ends in frenetic madness. “Charred Remains” closes things with scalding noise and scorching guitars, the speed becoming an even greater factor. Growls gurgle thick oil as the noise echoes, synth dashes across the sky, and the final moments grab you by the throat and refuse to let go.

Kontusion aren’t reinventing the medium with their self-titled debut EP, but no one said they had to do that. The four tracks here are packed with riffs and violence, a rowdy burst of fury that feels timeless and urgently fresh. This is a punisher, and hopefully these vets have a proper full-length record up their sleeves to pay off the wounds they so generously open here.

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To buy the album, go here: