By now, VOMITOR should need no introduction. For nearly 20 years now, these Aussie hooligans have been dominating the metal underground with their own, idiosyncratic brand of Total Death Metal. From their raucous ‘n’ ribald early demos to their utterly classic debut album, Bleeding the Priest, and onward, VOMITOR have been a study in staunch defiance and sheer uncompromising will. Each album of theirs is its own world, its own headspace, its own frothing, ferocious beast of bedlam; and while the world around them continues to change, VOMITOR stand sure as steel, doggedly and deadly.
VOMITOR have never been ones for half measures: it’s all in, or nothing. They do not rush records, and only attack when inspiration arises; this explains why eight years separate that momentous debut LP and its nuclear-powered follow-up, Devils Poison. Then, two years after that second album, in 2012 came The Escalation – which, true to its title, found VOMITOR hitting a fever pitch. Alas, another considerable hiatus – not to mention more live detonations across Europe and, at long last, North America – and five years later arrives Pestilent Death.
Also true to its title, Pestilent Death is swarming and virulent, boundless and final. Characteristically, VOMITOR kick into high gear immediately here, and there’s no relenting to their iron-fisted fury. Ancient spells from underground metal’s rich past are corralled and then contorted to VOMITOR’s diabolical design, resulting in a trademark sound that’s all their own. Blood-red and raw yet somehow refined, the bolstered four-piece lineup of The Escalation (which saw Portal’s Horror Illogium joining their ranks) continues their dominance across seven stout tracks in an incendiary 32 minutes. Each one’s a literal tornado of everything that’s made VOMITOR so endearing and enduring: thermonuclear riffing, dive-bombing solos, vocal vomit, and chaotic crunch, now all rendered in its clearest but most cutting state.
Warped minds breed warped music, and VOMITOR are more warped than most: Pestilent Death is heavy metal barbarity taken to its most maniacal extreme.
Hells Headbangers (USA), 2018.