Review Summary: Heavy and as technical as can be, this is guitar and bass wankery at its finest.
Guitar wankery is not a description that often describes a good band. In fact, it is usually looked down upon if a band does this. However, Viraemia show that guitar wankery doesn't have to be completely mindless sweeping and showing off. That's not to say this EP is free of problems, but it's a great collection of tech-death.
The first thing you'll notice when you start listening to this is, of course, the insane guitar work. But upon closer inspection, you'll find that the bass is also not only audible, but a noteworthy addition to the band. Shredding along at blazing speeds on his custom 10 string bass is Scott Plummer. His bass work is truly something to marvel at, and you'll have plenty of opportunities to do so as the EP progresses. At times the guitar (and bass) work moves into what I like to call "spacey sounding sweeps" (Otherwise known as Rings Of Saturn territory). This other-worldly sound is interesting, and gives the songs a whole new layer of technicality.
The vocals are pretty much your standard death metal affair. The highs aren't particularly well done on this album, but the lows are very heavy and completely make up for the highs. The intensity of the lows, combined with the few breakdowns strewn throughout the tracks, makes for some bone-crushing headbanging opportunities. That combined with the fast and energetic drumming makes for some enjoyable instrumentation overall. It does get just a tiny bit repetitive towards the end, but not enough to make this a bad listen.
Although being full to the brim with wankery, this wankery is of the highest quality. Tech death is often criticized for not having very good song structure, and this is not without merit. But with this particular release, that's not quite the case. For the most part, the songwriting is actually memorable and structured fairly well. If you're a fan of technical death metal stew with a side of wankery biscuits, you'll be happy to know that Viraemia's wankery biscuits are delicious, even adding some wank butter to the bass work.
The short running time of 19 minutes helps to keep the album from getting boring, even though it may leave you wanting more. Unfortunately, at least at this point in time, the band is split up. So this might be the only thing this band will ever release; and that's a shame, because they show a lot of potential on this EP. If you don't mind some insane shredding without reason, then Viraemia's EP is a worthy album for your wankery craving. It's memorable, heavy, and a great ride, while it lasts.
Pit Of Pestilence