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Scumpulse - Rotten

by Bradley Karr at 20 March 2018, 9:19 PM

SCRUMPULSE was founded in Scotland from the remnants of FIFTEEN DEAD and TOWER OF FLIES. In 2014 they released the EP “By Design” and was supported by several UK tours. Now they have their first full length album “Rotten” for fans to listen to. The band says they are punk infused black metal, which is a new genre for me, so I am excited to see what is in store for me. “Alba Gu Brath” comes out swinging with fast paced beats and quick guttural vocals. The song is fast but doesn’t not beat you over the head with the drums like most fast-paced songs. This one reserves the fast drum beats and it gives the song a more dynamic feel. The vocals stay guttural throughout the song but weave between high and low pitch. Even though, it was hard for me to make out the lyrics the differing pitches lent itself to making the song and enjoyable listen.

“Broken Reflection” is another fast-paced song that comes out swing and doesn’t take any prisoners. The vocals are still guttural, but this time the different pitches are layered over one another giving the song an otherworldly sound. The instrumentals are on point with solid guitar and drum beats. Again, on this song I had a hard time following the lyrics because of the way they are sung, the speed and guttural nature makes them a little bit indecipherable. “Gnawed by Pigs” begins with a very subdued guitar riff before coming in with a screechy guttural scream. The song picks up speed and hammers home the bands style. I think that punk infused black metal is a good description of this band, especially on this song. The speed and the way the music is played is reminiscent of punk, but the black metal is there in the vocals and the quick drum beats. At one point the song fades into a guitar solo and you can really appreciate the musicianship on display.

“King of Dogshit”, what a great title, begins with some words from Michael Douglas’ character in the movie Wall Street over dark drenched music. The song has a beautiful sound as it gives way to the vocals and crunchier music. The vocals are the most surprising part of this song. The guttural wails that you have become accustomed to give way to straight up punk lyrics, before falling back into the guttural sound again. The first time they changed it up it took me off guard, but it worked well within the song and show how this band is melding the two styles nicely. “Wage Decay” starts very ominous with deep guitar riffs and subdued drums before hitting the gas and laying it to the listener. This song is another fast-paced track that you will find yourself head banging to. This song has a more punk feel to it than the previous songs in the way it is played.

The band ends the album with “Sand and Dust”. The song is very somber and slowed down compared to the rest of the album. The drums really shine at the beginning of the song you can feel each hit resonate in the speakers. The band doesn’t keep this pace for long before they break into a more classical dark metal sounding song. Towards the end of the song this song has some really great guitar work on display. Not a bad listen but I think when the band takes chances with their sound it pays off. I enjoyed “Rotten” while listening to it. It was interesting to see a band try to mesh dark metal and punk sounds. When the band played with this is when the album truly shined. I would definitely recommend the album to any fan of either style of music who was wanting to find something a little different.

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

3 Star Rating

1. Alba Gu Brath
2. Rotten
3. Broken Reflection
4. Gnawed by Pigs
5. King of Dogshit
6. Pure Jakebawlocaust
7. Wage Decay
8. Sand and Dust
Ross Necro – Vocals/Guitar
Magnus “Magneto” Tait – Lead Guitar
Matt Dean – Bass
Andrew Rankine – Drums
Record Label: Gore House Productions


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