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Phobophilic - Undimensioned Realities

Phobophilic
Undimensioned Realities
by Quinten Serna at 15 October 2019, 9:14 PM

Coming from North Dakota PHOBOPHILIC is a Death Metal band who just issued their first EP, “Undimensioned Identities” on their own. Death Metal as a whole is perhaps one of the most versatile niches as it concerns vocal prowess and delivery more so than instrumentation—from the screeching and piercing highs of Chuck Schuldiner—near the end of his career—to the low and distinct roars of Brendon Smalls—of course the genre is meaningless without its aggressive and no-holds-barred music yet it seems the delivery is what separates Death Metal from Thrash, Speed, Crossover and various other forms.

The EP doesn’t waste any time with a form of an intro and jumps right into the first song “That Which Swallowed The Sun”. The drums and strings work remarkably well together playing different rhythms and patterns that intersect with one another at accentuations whilst the vocals sound out in the space between. “Subterranean Miscreation” has the misfortune of being placed directly after the first track making it feel as if it’s a continuation of it due to it being within the same key and sharing various other rhythmic similarities. By itself the song is well built and follows a more traditional heavy approach, at least from the drums; the familiar way the instruments build upon one another is present once again within this song signaling that it is a motif of the band. “Diminished To Unbeing” has an elongated introduction but jumps into the verse very quickly despite; each section flows into one another with great ease and seamless implementation. The final song upon the EP “Synaptic Vessel” has the most interesting and intricate grooves on the entire EP singling it out from the track listing as a whole due to the amazing smooth transitions and interesting dynamics having about itself almost a disco styling with the hi-hats.

The instruments as a whole were performed with excellence but don’t stand out as exemplary when it comes to recording fidelity. The guitars are full and thick pairing well with the vocals and bass; the bass is thick and powerful though and in reference to the guitar tones mixed with exception; the drums have an amazing captured performance but lack clarity in certain spots such as when the kick overpowers the snare and just becomes a wash of deep booms; the vocals are deep and guttural but feel a bit too quiet to be appreciated.

PHOBOPHILIC has crafted an interested EP which should itself appeal to most fans of the genre, earning themselves a good amount of listeners to which their performance deserves, however people unfamiliar or impartial to Death Metal won’t be attracted to the CD as the band proudly and unapologetically bears its roots.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 8


4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. That Which Swallowed The Sun
2. Subterranean Miscreation
3. Diminished To Unbeing
4. Synaptic Vessel
Lineup:
Christian Alm—Bass
Vincent Tweten—Drums
Aaron Dudgeon—Guitars and Vocals
Josh Poer—Guitars
Record Label: Rotted Life Records
     


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