Death Squad (IRN)
جنگ ابدی


4.0
excellent

Review

by SomeGuyDude USER (36 Reviews)
October 3rd, 2020 | 26 replies


Release Date: 2020 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Blistering metal from a band who may never be able to reap the rewards of their skill.

I had to add this one to Sputnik myself after discovering it, and it was well worth doing so. I'll keep it brief.

I have a fondness for Middle Eastern death/black metal. For one, I'm always a fan of seeing metal through the lens of parts of the world that don't normally do it. For two, though, when it comes from a place like the Middle East, there's a sense of urgency and force because (as we saw with Arsames and Confess) this kind of music isn't permitted. So when a band does it, they're putting themselves at very real life risk. All for the music. That's as metal as it gets.

As a result, sometimes I find myself being rather forgiving when the music isn't entirely up to snuff. If the production is off or if it just kinda sounds like a derivative of the more common western sound. With Death Squad (translated name), the influences are all over the place for sure, but it's just done so damn well that I don't have to make excuses. This is incredibly vicious blackened death metal, with meaty production and just enough of an off-kilter jank to it to keep things interesting.

Obviously I have no idea what they're saying, but with an album called "Eternal War" and song titles like "Exile" and "We Are All Dead" I don't think Death Squad is trying to win points for lyrical profundity. Again, that's not a problem. These guys aren't just wearing Morbid Angel t-shirts and following a scene, they're in the fires themselves. The emotion carries the load over the lyrics. The vocalist has a very old school rasp that's closer to thrash than the deep death gutturals or anything black metal related, and it gives his performance an anger and aggression that would be lost if he was gurgling at the bottom or screeching at the top. This sounds like protest music.

I'm not ENTIRELY sure how best to describe the sound, because it does seem to exist in this spot at the nexus of black, death, with a touch of thrash in there for fun. The best example I can come up with is an angrier and less melodic Goatwhore but that seems a bit unfair on both bands. The riffs wave between chugging and black metal tremolos, without seeming like they're just sticking the various styles together like a jigsaw puzzle. You'll have a total 2nd wave death metal track like #2, then go into a slow trem-picking beast like #5 (forgive me for not using song names), and even that segues immediately into a rapid, and much shorter, death-y track.

This isn't show-off metal. There aren't wild arpeggios, no guitar solos or weird jazz bass breaks, the drummer isn't trying to be George Kollias, the bass just fills in the bottom end, and that's perfect for what's happening here. It's potent, pissed off metal from a band that I fear won't ever be able to enjoy the kind of attention they deserve simply because of where they're from, but maybe that's what makes them even more special. I was tempted to go over the top just out of my pure delight at finding them and knowing what a gem this is, all things considered, but I'll temper my enthusiasm and just rate the album on its own merits.

Purchased from their bandcamp, and I implore you to do the same: https://6667.bandcamp.com/album/-



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user ratings (3)
3.8
excellent


Comments:Add a Comment 
Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
October 3rd 2020


32043 Comments


I am very intrigued...

AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
October 3rd 2020


10209 Comments


I had no idea that middle eastern bm/dm was a thing- cool.

I like the conversational tone of the rev, although you may want to consider bunging things like bandcamp links and the fact that you had to add it to the database in the comments section rather than the body of the rev. Just my 2 cents.

Bedex
October 3rd 2020


3133 Comments


Absolutely stunned that sputnik can handle that band name and album title

someone
Contributing Reviewer
October 3rd 2020


6643 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

to listen: https://6667.bandcamp.com/releases

TheSupernatural
October 3rd 2020


2213 Comments


Marg Metal

parksungjoon
October 3rd 2020


47234 Comments


oh hey

i heard about this

then i tried to paste that into youtube and it just gave me suicide squad trailers and shit...

cheers for the link, pos'd

parksungjoon
October 3rd 2020


47234 Comments


>I had no idea that middle eastern bm/dm was a thing- cool.


damaar - triumph through spears of sacrilege

parksungjoon
October 3rd 2020


47234 Comments


ok i am listening now

90470n573r01d5
October 3rd 2020


37 Comments


Check out Al-Namrood too if you kinda want to get deeper into blasphemic Middle Eastern bm/dm. Not really a fan personally, but I appreciate the balls these guys have.

parksungjoon
October 3rd 2020


47234 Comments


oh yeah forgot about that band

id love to know what theyre singing about

zakalwe
October 3rd 2020


38915 Comments


‘I have a fondness for Middle Eastern death/black metal’

You and every other wanker down the record store.

Orb
October 3rd 2020


9380 Comments


Great review!! Im also shocked sputnik can handle Farsi. I didnt think these ancient bones had it in 'em. I'm curious to check this out. Also, I'd suggest using Persian or Iranian instead of "middle eastern" though. I'm not saying I know a ton of Persian folks, but the few good friends of mine who do hail from out there would probably appreciate the differentiation.

SomeGuyDude
October 3rd 2020


377 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Legit question: do Persians not want to be considered part of the Middle East? I mention it because I like a handful of bands from the region like Damaar and Al-Namrood and I wanted to sort of link them all together as hailing from that area, not going country by country. Like saying "Scandinavian" or something.

unclereich
October 3rd 2020


12057 Comments


this sounds super interesting

DePlazz
October 3rd 2020


4492 Comments


Cool

zakalwe
October 3rd 2020


38915 Comments


This is a right steaming pile of سرگین شتر

90470n573r01d5
October 3rd 2020


37 Comments


// Legit question: do Persians not want to be considered part of the Middle East?

I think they get offended over being called Arabs, not Middle Eastern. I could be wrong though. Either way Iran is geographically located there. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_East

SomeGuyDude
October 3rd 2020


377 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah I wouldn't say "Arab" since ethnically the area is more diverse than just that but I figured referencing the region was safe.



Regardless, I keep listening to this and I might need to bump the rating at some point. I know it's not anything crazy unique, but it's so damn solid I love it.

Orb
October 3rd 2020


9380 Comments


From what I can gather from my conversations with my friends from Iran, they take great pride in being the only country in that region who didn't lose their language to Arabic, and preserved much of their culture even as Islam became the top religion. Now, granted, they fled here with their parents in the 90's, because none them liked what the new Iran looked like when the government went radical, so their take on it might be different than say, someone who still lives there, but it seems to me, Persians have a sense of identity that is pretty removed from "middle eastern" in a more profound way than say, a Canadian feels removed from being "north american". They definitely have a cultural precedent for feeling more separate from being "arab", becuase they're not arab at all really. Maybe I'm talking out of my ass here, but its just what Ive observed from learning about Iran through my Persian friends. I could be way off base, who knows. Either way, I love what I get see of their culture, and the food is absolutely magnificent too.

unclereich
October 3rd 2020


12057 Comments


thank you for that insight that is very fascinating



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