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Dead Beyond Buried - The Dark Era - 80%

Darkangelemperor, December 20th, 2012

Shrugging aside any temptation to go genre trotting or jockey for attention with gimmickry, Dead Beyond Buried have established themselves as one of the UK's finest when it comes to straight-up, no frills death metal, earning their reputation the hard way with watertight songwriting and an ear for satisfying sonic battery.

Get past the almost aggressively uninspiring title, and their third full-length offers an overstocked meat locker full of slaver-inducing treats, every track coming in at around five minutes of pure musical protein. No more inclined to go for technical grandstanding for its own sake than they are to throw in a hardcore breakdown or keyboard flourish, DBB's faith in their command of the traditionalist playbook is justified by the regularity of those moments that inspire unconscious air guitar, air drumming and claw handling.

The lurching, bestial build that slashes and burns a clearing for Utopias's euphoric central refrain would fit snuggly into the crawlspace under Cannibal Corpse's house'. The churning vortex of eldritch magnificence that comprises Dripping Black Bile's first half would be equally at home in Morbid Angel's cosmic void cathedral, or one of Portal's more accessible clock windmills, if you like your references less screamingly obvious.

Those who can't stomach their DM without a side order of novelty or an experimental bend might not see the attraction, but anyone whose chief requirement of the genre is that it be substantial as a punch in the gullet will be well taken care of.