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I first came across this band whilst on youtube listening to a band called Abnormity (I think) and on the side was Bodyfarm and their music video to track 5 of this no title EP called "Slaves of War". Bodyfarm have a lot of old school influences to them; the vocals have a more dirtier, raw sound than today's deep, gutteral, brutal vocals of death metal. The guitars also have this very raw sounding to them accompanied with the rhythmic drum and blast beats with sometimes a double bass pounding away. The band members who played in this EP were Thomas Wouters on vocals and guitar, Harry (don't know the last name) on bass and Quint Meerbeek on drums.
So, onto the EP and it starts off with "Into Battle" an instroduction track which begins with a heroic type classical music which some people think is a bit of a waste of time, but I disagree; i think this sets the EP up quite well and gives us a bit of a 'what to expect' in the EP. The classical music finally ends and the guitars come roaring in for track 2 "Bodyfarm" before vocalist Thomas, comes in with his own 'roar' whilst the guitars play a very rhythmic riff and the drums playing a variety of drum beats before slowing down into this slow sound and then returning to the rhythmic riff and drum beats. Thomas starts his vocals and everything goes into this fast paced sound before getting a rhythm going which also gets you going. The guitars then play a very old school, guitar solo and then ending with Thomas deep vocals.
The EP has a variety of slow and fast paced bits in it; like in track 3 "Final Redemption" it starts of with slow roaring guitars before going into (again) this rhythm of guitar riffs and drum and blast beats. Track 4 "Heartraped" is another example of this: it starts with a pretty cool drum solo and then into this fast paced rhythm which sounds like Machine Head song "Davidian".Track 5 "Slaves of War" has to be the best track on this EP with it's blast beats, fast pace and with a lot of meaning to it, being based on World War 1 with it's lyrical content like "Guns are blasting from the trenches" and "Generals gathered safe in comfort".
Bodyfarm I think have made a very good EP: the vocals are of a dirty, raw sound along with the guitars. The drums are well played with it's drum and blast beats with the accompanying double bass. The production on this EP is also very good and you can really get a feel of whats going on, it almost hits you so to speak, and with this EP also being (at the start) self released I think the band have done very well. I will definitely be checking out their first and (when it comes out) second album
On their eponymoys debut EP, initially self-released last year but now reissued by Abyss Records, Bodyfarm explores the territories of simple old school death metal, though luckily the material doesn’t fall to any exact geographical location musically, at least not too evidently - I think that pretty much everything is melted together here (with perhaps a slight dominance of the Swedish underground), forming an enjoyable but definitely unsurprising little album.
In spite of being their first release, the band sounds really mature: not only the production is bright and massive, but the execution of instruments seems flawless in all departments. Song-wise, the EP starts with a rather unnecessary and pompous symphonic intro that already takes a nice amount of the EP’s running time, but after that ”Bodyfarm” attacks with menacing tremolo riffs and blast beats not unlike Bloodbath - the similar style is later utilized on ”Heartraped”. ”Final Redemption” and ”Slaves of War” then, on the other hand, focus on slower tempo, chugging riffs and morbid atmosphere, belonging to my personal favourites of the whole.
Bodyfarm is ultimately rooted in old school values without going any further in innovation. What they batter here is well done and engaging but it also feels like a brief teaser of what’s to come, that’s what I hope at least. Thus said, Bodyfarm doesn’t seem to be in its full glory here on a short EP release with mere four tracks, but perhaps I’m able to capture a better picture of the group when a full-length arrives.
2.5 / 5
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Netherland's Bodyfarm releases their debut effort, the self-titled EP in 2010, a mere short year after their formation. The opening track, Into Battle is an instrumental track, with an almost heroic and epic feel reminiscent of bands that play the heroic style of folk metal such as Ensiferum, and this certainly gives the listener a high expectation of what's to come, considering the climax that the track has managed to build up.
Unfortunately, as the self-titled track Bodyfarm begins, it gets slightly awkward due to the mixing and the mastering of the album. While the intro track has led the listener to expect for an extremely polished production, what is presented here is a trebly and raw production quality, excellent for the purpose of spreading their brand of death metal. Bodyfarm continues punishing listeners as the heavy starting riffs manage to further build up the climax and the pressure before the band unleashes hell upon the listeners. As soon as the second half of the song begins, all hell is let loose as the band goes into breakneck speed, a tribute to 90s-styled death metal such as Bolt Thrower. The face-ripping Heartraped is particularly memorable with the catchy riffs and the insane speed that the band travels at.
The band, while seemingly paying homage to old-school death metal, also throws in some of their personal flavours to the music, such as on the last few moments of Final Redemption, where the band breaks into a moment of chaos, with constantly shifting tempos, messing with the listener's head all the way until the end.
The only thing that caused the enjoyment of the album to be slightly affected is the mixing of the cymbals on the album, oftentimes threatening to drown out the rest of the instruments, and the under-mixing of the guitars, causing the listener to have to strain in order to catch the brilliant guitar solos on the album.
Bodyfarm is a Death Metal group that formed back in 2009. The band worked hard and issued a demo release that marketed the group to many labels, and soon found the band signing with Abyss Records. In an effort to prepare the masses of the forthcoming Bodyfarm material, Abyss Records is issuing the band's initial self-titled debut EP under their name, and bringing it to a more expansive audience. Does this four song plus introduction track have what it takes to incite the masses for what's to come?
While "Into Battle (Intro)" does what it sets out to do by weaving an atmosphere of war that emenates from the very start of the track, it isn't under the firey and tenacious Death Metal of the title track "Bodyfarm" that the group's potential genuinely shines through. The aggressive and fast paced music is complimented by a well rounded vocal approach that varies in gutteral performance from deeper to higher forceful pitches. The drums keep the speed going with solid mixtures throughout the kit, and the bass driven guitars have a great edge to them while being a little more intricate, but retaining a more Swedish Death Metal approach similar to that of bands like Dismember and Bloodbath. The following track "Final Redemption" clinches this with a song that will have "Eaten" by Bloodbath chanting away in the back of your head thanks to the slower aggression and anger of the track feeling similar to that song, but overall not coming close to being a carbon copy of the track. The music in general here feels more chugging then fast in pace and lacking fury, but overall still remains heavy, a little more complex, aiding to a very commanding atmosphere to the recording.
There's no room to complain about Bodyfarm, as the music here is simply intense from start to finish, and just very well done. The production is just muddy enough to give it a nice little edge without it being too digital and clear, and the songs on here all just drip with aggression. The only track on this EP that didn't really seem to stand out as much was "Heartraped", but that is more because the song's chorus feels like something one might hear in a Metalcore or not-as-brutal Deathcore act, leaving it to feel a little out of place compared to "Bodyfarm" and even "Slaves of War", another slower track like "Final Redemption" that focuses on chugging guitars, which really stands out for the intimidating vibe the music manages to give off from the heavy, somewhat complex guitars that are aided well with a heavy bass presence. The music of "Slaves of War" also features some passages that genuinely sound like moments where you should marching that will instinctively have you banging your head along with the crushing music whether you want to or not.
Overall, Bodyfarm is a solid nearly eighteen Death Metal romp. Each track on here shows off the abilites of the band nicely, but leaves you with the feeling this is only the tip of the iceburg and that there's more to explore for this group. Bodyfarm definitely sound like a very mature and professional group already, and with this demo release, it's no wonder the group was signed as quickly as they were. There's no reason whatsoever to pass up this EP, and if you do for some reason then you're a fool. If you're looking for solid uncompromising Death Metal then Bodyfarm is where you should start looking.
Though veterans like Pestilence and Asphyx have regrouped for touring and albums, Hail of Bullets and Sinister persisting in their personal punishment; there has not been a massive influx of younger artists into the Dutch death metal bloodstream. Enter the Bodyfarm, a fresh phalanx of aggressors intent on altering this course, with a decidedly old school approach that leans entirely upon the fundamentals of slower to mid-paced crushing momentum. It's obvious that Bolt Thrower, Asphyx and Hail of Bullets are comparisons here, especially the excellent production values of this debut EP, but I'd also draw a parallel to the earlier albums of Swedish Hypocrisy, due to the stripped down songwriting values.
As the style is wholly reliant on pummeling primacy and monstrous grooves, there's not really an enormous level of innovation to what the Dutchmen are playing. "Slaves of War" left the biggest impression on me with the ascending thrash mutes woven into the double bass and the forceful hardcore surge of the bridge, but there wasn't a lot of distinction in the writing. "Heartraped" accelerates into some of the fastest material on the EP, numerous blasted rhythms offset with grooves, most notably the Bolt Thrower swerve at about 2:40; "Final Redemption" concocts an elixir of lumbering breakdowns and squeals, while "Bodyfarm" itself escalates from a belligerent tension to another of the band's scarce bursts of speed/lead. The whole shebang is led off with a martial synthesizer intro that suitably foreshadows the ominous battlefields to follow.
Naturally, there is a substantial audience for this sort of authentic, early 90s fare, a hybrid of War Master or The IVth Crusade with Penetralia or Osculum Obscenum, and to that extent, Bodyfarm does not prove a disappointment. The mix benefits from a massive, brutal clarity that should shake down any set of speakers like the presence of mobile artillery. Unfortunately, these strengths are counterbalanced by a noted lack of sticking power in the guitar notation. The EP does well to peak your interest through its intro, and the walls of tone deliver a satisfactory environment of throughput, but the riffs are not highly titillating, nor do the competent grunts possess the same ruthless character of, say, a Martin van Drunen. Bodyfarm is not something that proves memorable after a few spins.
That said, if you're a proponent for such yesteryear's sincerity, this group does not offend. They certainly sound the part, if nothing else. A few more tours of duty, some catchier guitars to draw the ear deeper into the concussion, and these Dutch could become real contenders.