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Scordatura – Mass Failure

Mass Failure
by Quinten Serna at 30 October 2020, 9:07 AM

There exists some manner of macabre and enticing draw to Death Metal as a whole, a deeper sentiment of some subconscious refuge where the deepest registers of the human mind go to cast any semblance of content into oblivion—SCORDATURA is no stranger to such embraces, the name itself even refers to their askance approach to music. The atmosphere found within “Mass Failure” is that of dismal abandon, one of absolute desolation and despair.

Such antics and emphasis can be found within the opening number, “Disease Of Mind” whose introduction is composed of nothing more than a drum fill prior to the whole of the band’s joining—in recent years I’ve never come across an album that opens in such a manner, of such exacting disregard for convention, where the integration of such is both refreshing and numbing. “Skin Trophy” follows the immediate in-your-face attitude as the preceding track as well accompanied with some double time and half time sections; the song itself features an incredibly large range in terms of progression and whilst it never strays too far from its central theme its modulations are of an eerie and jarring distinction. “World Devoured” commences with bass and drums laid over a sample of what can only be described as panic; the song features a striking amount of varying riffs, progressions, and rhythms feeling more as a compressed opus rather than a centralized song. The song for which the album draws its name, “Mass Failure,” cuts through conventional design once more as the band starts in full almost immediately—the varying rhythms and leads once more provide a background sentiment of tension and unease, a staple for the band, and an indulging familiarity for the listener. The final track on the listing, “Collapse Of Humanity” features a start-stop progression as its opening and closing rhythm presenting an alarming different type of tone for the song which is briefly touched in other songs, that of unease and apprehension.

Each track is a beast in and of itself with the instruments providing the foundation for each song to break through tonally and worm their way into the listener’s attention. The bass is a heavy substance, one that is greater felt than heard as its deepened impact not only fills out the bottom end of each track in completion but also provides an eerie and eldritch tone to the whole of the album, almost as if the bass was just barely out of tune. The guitars are very much forward in every single song with the left channel being a bit more distinguished than the right, whether it be as a result of volume or that its tone is inclusive of a bit more mid-tones, it’s a heavy hitting tone which creates the effect of being unbalanced. The drums are of a solid build such that the grooves sit well within every track and seamlessly transition between each section. And lastly, the vocals area reaching, cathartic, visceral, and exacting delivery, where each syllable is made to cut through the instruments and strike directly at the listener, as though each phoneme was carefully and meticulously chosen to break through the instrumentation.

Mass Failure” is—ironically—a success in reference to its intended goals and designs, the quality of the recording pairs quite well with the band’s writing abilities, making for a distinct third album. The LP feels that it could have benefited greatly from the addition of one more song, though fits right in the middle of the band’s previous two releases in terms of length. This album is that of a brutal and gruesome design and shines brightest in the grittiest of collections.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Disease Of Mind
2. Skin Trophy
3. Nothing But Dust
4. Contorted Existence
5. World Devoured
6. The Flesh That Hates
7. Mass Failure
8. Immense Atrocity
9. Collapse Of Humanity
Derek Wright – Bass
Tam Moran – Drums
Owen McKendrick – Guitars
Daryl Boyce - Vocals
Record Label: Gore House Productions


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