Review Summary: Prepare for a new form of bludgeoning
Maruta are a one of a kind grindcore band. While they have the solid Grindcore foundation that everyone who is reading this review probably knows of (the short song lengths, the blast beats, and of course the blazing riffs) they add drops of multiple other genres such as djent and crust punk. Now this this kind of mixing of genres usually leads to either two outcomes, a total disaster, or something that makes them special. In this case, it's the latter. Maruta have finally sorted through their large archives of influences and have pulled out a solid sound for themselves that feels fully developed and doesn't feel corny or out of place at all.
From start to finish like most grindcore albums this album is saturated with grit and aggression. Every guitar riff will beat and batter you down until you are cowering in a corner begging for mercy and crying out "uncle!" But what sets Maruta apart from other grindcore bands is that they approach that grit and agression in a multitude of ways. While the variety lies primarily in the riffs. The drummer even lets his foot off the gas to allow extra variety to seep in but not to the point where the music doesn't sound like grindcore. From the songs "Hope Smasher" to "Submergence" the band keeps just as much grit and anger from one song to the next without the album experience becoming stale. The vocals are something thing to be praised for also. The vocalist has a unique variety that integrates with the rest of what the riffs are doing, they don't just lie on top, they fit right in like a key into a lock with the riffs that are being put out in just about every song on the album even if a certain vocal type is used only one time throughout the album (for example the song "Erode.")
The only real problem that lies within this album and the bands sound in general is that while the riffs are the absolute backbone to Maruta, the guitar doesn't really let any of the other instruments show them selfs. Just about all the bass lines are identical to the guitar riffs and the guitar is almost always ahead of the drummer as opposed to being in sync or complimenting each other. This is the only real drawback of this album though, the guitar takes control of all other instruments and somewhat puts them in a chokehold not allowing them to shine out when they easily could. If Maruta were to allow this, they would have created an almost perfect sound for themselves.
Maruta have set themselves apart though from many other grindcore acts and have an excellent Relapse debut that is de direly worth checking out. Although their earlier content may have been disjointed to a point where you just couldn't take some of the songs seriously, Maruta have now finally found themselves a good spot that they can easily work from and are at the point where the flaws are only small nuances that can easily can be fixed. In short, Maruta are not a disjointed mess anymore. They are ready to take you on and make you stand in defeat.