It seems like just about every year that a split hits the internet where both bands were previously unknown to me, therefore doubling the amount of excitement that ensues when each side of said split leaves me floored. It leaves me with twice as many “peer” bands to check out, and twice as many times to ask myself “Where the fu
ck have I been, not listening to so-and-so?” Canuck bands Antediluvian and Adversarial formed to create this split LP earlier in 2012, and the result is a gory mess of blackened death perhaps better than any straight-up single-band LP 2012 has seen. The unrelenting mesh of swirling chaos and dissonance from both sides is heaviness to the point of noxiousness at times, and both bands succeed in what I consider the cardinal measurement of quality in this realm: establishing a personality enough so that “Adversarial” or “Antediluvian” stands out from “death metal.”
One reason the split is so potent is that it’s so over-saturated. Rather than pausing for solos and breaks, both bands adhere to a strict formula of riff-upon-riff. The entirety is overflowing with unrelenting energy and the prime similarity between the two artists is their ability to concoct a creative formula in which their unidirectional songwriting sounds focused, tight, and intense as opposed to monotonous. The split is anything but uninspired as well, steering clear from death metal tropes in their growls; rather, the vocals are more complementary and understated, especially on the Adversarial side. You may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned many significant differences between Adversarial and Antediluvian: as previously noted, each band has a distinct personality that distinguishes them from a “death metal crowd,” but their overwhelming similarities makes them a fitting pair for a split. Altogether, the LP is one of the most ferocious of the death metal year, easily eclipsing efforts from the likes of more popular acts like Deathspell Omega or Incantation. This is not a split to miss if you have any interest in death metal up-and-comers.