Album Review: Deathchant – Self-Titled

King Volume Records


deathchant on selective memory

Deathchant’s debut is the aural version of Vanishing Point. The band packed their gear and headed out of Los Angeles to hole up in a cabin up at Big Bear. For two days nonstop they crushed live metal ragers simply documented on this release. I don’t know what happened at that cabin and maybe I don’t want to know. Is this what it’s like when Los Angeles metalers converge with nature?

Preserved like a field recording in another dimension, the album is intense. The insanity is preserved within a raw frivolity of metal chaos. Sometimes they falter. On “Pessimist” the song falls into a garbled mess of noise, twisted into oblivion. If it was Refused, they would have used the opportunity to transcend into another song. But Deathchant picks up right where they left off, accentuating guitar solos amidst the fuzz emitting off the cymbals.

At this point, I don’t know where the hell I am. Sometimes it feels like falling into a drug haze of psychedelic mental caverns as with the sludge rhythms of “Control.” Other times it’s a transistor joy ride that “Trigger” takes us on. If it was any different, this album would fail.

Deathchant is an effect. I feel like I am in a lab observing what this band processes as rock and roll only they may not be from this planet. The turbulence of “Hex” poses with hip-shaker, blues-soaked rhythms speeds light years into infinity. Am I experiencing Doremi Fasol Latido all over again? “Ritual,” the psychedelic hit and “Eulogy,” a stoner ballad, this all plays out like a classic album dug up from the earth, and digitized from its dust.

TK Lemieux is a mad scientist, the bandleader guiding chaos as his orchestra. With the help of John Bolino, Colin Fahrner, and George Camacho, I cannot fathom what lies in store for them as I am still recovering from the melange of madness experienced on this essential debut. Wow!

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