Review Summary: *DUN* *DUN* *DUN* *DUN* BREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
Hailing from the oh-so-metal country of China, Dehumanizing Itatrain Worship are a three-piece “slamming” brutal death metal band that set out to combine death metal with tracks taken from the anime Love Live! School Idol Project
. Due to this absurd concept and their guro inspired artwork, the band received quite a bit of attention back in 2017 when their only EP, μ'sick
was streamed on the metal Youtube channel, Slam Worldwide
. The album currently has around 500K views on Youtube and is said by many to be one of the better slam releases of 2016 (or 2017 since that’s when it went viral).
Clocking in at around 23 minutes, μ'sick
is an extremely quick listen. Right from the start of the EP, the track “Intro” begins with blast beats accompanied by a fast guitar riff before leading into a guitar sweep and then a slam riff. The abrupt start of the album lets the listener know right off the bat that, despite the absurd concept, Dehumanizing Itatrain Worship aren’t ***ing around when it comes to brutality. This kind of riffage continues as the intro track leads into a solo before fading into the first real song on the album, “Brutal Rush”. “Brutal Rush” starts immediately with the singer, Kiryu Zhang, performing a loud pig squeal over blast beats and some fairly technical death metal riffing. After this, the album once again slows down for slams as the vocalist begins growling what I assume are the lyrics to the Love Live!
song that this is a “cover” of. The song continues on with slower double bass parts and lightning fast blast beats before fading into a sample of characters from the anime talking. The rest of the songs on the album follow this kind of structure, occasionally working in melodies from the show’s songs. An example of this can be seen in the song “僕らのSLAM 君とのSLAUGHTER” which does this in the very beginning by copying the intro melody from the Love Live!
song “Bokura no LIVE Kimi to no LIFE” before abruptly shifting into a blast beat and death metal riff.
Despite being somewhat of a joke band, the musicianship on μ'sick
is actually very tight and, at times, fairly complex. Information on the albums lineup is a bit tricky to come by since the band is banned from Metal Archives, but inside of the booklet, there are two people credited for guitar/bass work. One goes by the name Senjougahara Yousei and the other goes by Nibiru666 which sounds like a username. I am not sure of how much either member contributed to the album, but the guitar playing on μ'sick
is excellent throughout. The band has a tendency to use a decent amount of sweeps and solos that are both pretty tightly executed. The riffs on the album are also quite heavy and memorable, with lots of variety between fast death metal riffs and slower slam parts. The vocalist on the album, Kiryu Zhang, also contributes a lot to the bands overall sound, which can be a good or bad thing depending on personal taste. Unlike many brutal death metal vocalists, Zhang’s vocals are often at a pretty high pitch, as he often executes very intense shrieks and pig squeals. As a result, listeners who do not like these kinds of vocals will find them to be very grating, as he stays in this register for most of the songs. Aside from the shrieking, Zhang’s vocals get lower at times when he is growling the lyrics to the songs and these are also executed quite well. As far as the production itself is concerned, μ'sick
sounds surprisingly good production wise for such an underground release. The programmed drums on the album sound authentic and never play anything a metal drummer couldn’t, the vocals are mixed very well, and the both the guitars and bass have a nice punch to them.
Overall, Dehumanizing Itatrain Worship do an excellent job on this EP of writing fun death metal music. The album never takes itself too seriously and judging from the absurdity of the vocals and the actual music, it seems to me like the band just had a lot of fun making it. If you like brutal death metal and/or anime, this is definitely one to check out.