An art form called death metal can’t possibly be expected to warm hearts and minds and give the listener the energy needed to conquer the day. It’s easy to walk away disillusioned with life, overcome with gore and horror, and bludgeoned by the harshest elements of existence that we cannot do a single thing to avoid. It’s OK. I think we all knew this when cracking open the subgenre’s gates.
That brings us to Los Angeles death crushers Kommand whose second record “Death Age” jumps into the cesspool and makes things even more poisonous, which I didn’t realize was possible. Over six tracks and an economical 26 minutes, the band—vocalist Jesse Sanes, guitarists Ian Logan and Sam Shriver, bassist Tim Shriver, drummer Sam Bosson—taps into the most devious elements of our world and exposes it for the diseased terrain that it is. This is unadulterated misery, a collection that wallows in the filth and makes no apologies, hoping only to amplify the guttural, miserable horrors.
“Final Virus” tears open as the death assault immediately gets under way, chugging through infernal destruction, the menace heavy and oppressive. The playing scorches as the pummeling increases, the guitars boiling before blazing out. “Chimera Soldiers” heats up with the leads churning, the fury amplified as the trail continues into hell. Sooty playing coats your lungs, furious punishment barrels its way toward you, and a thunderous attack is mounted, bringing things to a burly finish. “Global Death” is ominous and humid, the growls scraping and the pace disrupting. The playing blisters as the tempo suddenly switches, jerking your head violently, the growls destroying, and the final moments of the madness disintegrating.
“Polar Holdout” strikes from the gates and lets the temperature get hotter, the tempo going dangerously fast, the growls leaving bruising on your face. The playing mashes bones, and then the guitars go into an atypical hypnotic spell before breaking out and burying everything deep in the soil. “Fleeing Western Territories” arrives amid storming guitars and raw speed, the storm encircling and increasing the pressure. Thrashy flattening becomes a bigger factor, the guitars splatter, and the final moments crush wills beyond identification. Closer “Collapse Metropolis” is delirious, making the ground quake and teeth grind, total demolition having its way. Growls deface as the guitars sound like they’re being slaughtered in a blender, tornadic horrors bleeding, the assault coming to a neck-breaking, abrupt end.
Kommand dig into your most animalistic inhibitions on “Death Age,” a record that’s over in a flash but leaves you properly battered in its rearview mirror. There’s no concern for safety or physical well-being when these tracks strike, as this is death metal as its most savage. If relentless and unforgiving is what you’re seeking, Kommand find a way to jam it down your throat and make you savor the horrifying aftertaste.
For more on the band, go here: https://www.kommand.band/
To buy the album, go here: https://www.20buckspin.com/kommand
For more on the label, go here: https://www.20buckspin.com/