The NT death metallers return to blaspheme the ears of the worthy with their second album North. So how does it stand up.
Some bands struggle with ideas for the second album, sometimes second guessing and changing musical directions - not so here! Not only does North stand up against their first album "Bacteria of this Earth" but you can hear they have grown into an even more tighter, well oiled death metal machine hell bent on decimating ear drums all over the country.
North begins with a quiet introduction aptly titled "Isolation" then rips into "The Defected area" which sounds as strong as ever, the Vocals of Jackson have become more intense and impacting.
Listening to the song "Beyond repressed" sums up the current climate in the Miazma camp the intricate sounds from Shaun Howell and Tim Glyde. So clean and precise guitar picking is a tribute to how much the lads put into playing the songs. The weird chord structure to create a soundscape of beautiful melody before ripping into brutal riff after riff.
Malcolm McDonald is a beast behind the drum kit. The fills and rhythms keep the backbone of the beast - that is Miazma - in check, then stands out alone in double bass kicks and blast beats. I honestly don't know how he can keep on delivering the goods time after time - but my hats off to you bro.
The stand out track for me is the last one, North, the title track. Not only does it remind me of spending time in the bush - with the track opening up with the crackling of a campfire and with wind swept emptiness of the country side - but it features some killer bass riffs courtesy of Kyle Mines. I'm not sure how intentional it was but their sounds like a bass line that came from French death metallers Gojira thrown into the mix there. For me that is the riff that topped it off for me.
The production of the album is very slick and sounds awesome. It was recorded at Pony Music Studios in Victoria - well done for a fine job lads. I also really like the cover art too, very simplistic but very effective, an all round great package.
Summing up, North is one hell of a brutal album standing toe to toe with all the other releases thus far this year.