Review | BRUTE Executes Bludgeoning Precision on Essence of Tyranny

            One of death metal’s definitive qualities is personified by this Slovakian entity, and BRUTE is precisely the style of force exerted on their fourth mighty slab titled Essence of Tyranny. This blunt or barbarous approach is only one aspect of the attack, however, and it drives the proliferation of various fretted patterns and techniques throughout, which achieve levels of complexity to maximize its ruinous impact. A volatile course is also pursued by rhythmic structures to prompt further upheaval, and their storm generates other notable impressions through melodic and elemental features. The Essence of Tyranny is undeniably prominent within these compositions, and their power is channeled into a crushing and detailed campaign as BRUTE advances with instrumental prowess.

            An ambient opening unfolds with traces of Industrial on “Splintered,” followed by radio transmissions to convey a sense of vastness, and melodic splendor carries its vein once the heaviness builds. This acts as a prelude to the punishment dominating the work, which sets off into drumbeats that pound alongside its riff formations, and increased muting pressure gives these a deeper crunch during certain double bass sections. A guttural vocal method reflects this aural tone, but raspier fluctuations parallel some heightened arrangements, including areas with a distinct energy on “13th Chamber,” and the production is full and clear without reaching sterility, thus allowing the technical proficiency from bass lines to be readily displayed throughout. Thick tremolos proceed across multiple rhythmic alterations, and accented points form a melodic element within the riffs. Sometimes they create discordant tones, like on “Greatest Pain,” where versatility is further shown through the power of higher tremolo varieties, and lead developments occasionally generate a magnified strike, as with later on “Splintered,” before heading into other ravaging territories.

            The orchestrated wrath is unleashed fully on ”Sated By Domination,” with the frenzied notes of its initial fiery riff being concurrent to a rapid pummeling from blast beats, and its arsenal expands when arpeggiations bring an unsettling edge to the fury. Numerous disorienting points are traversed as riffs combine blasting intensity with erratic structural and timing changes, and “Torturous Presence” demonstrates this effect along with sections of clean melodic eeriness. Its transitions include bursts of sharpened fretwork, which is an integral component that slows during grooved rhythms to form heavier melodic varieties, and they appear notably on tracks like “Greatest Pain” and “Disheartening Temptation.” These elements are effectively joined as brutality and scorching speed advance on “Furious Pictures and Agony,” and their culminative groove strikes through fretted intricacies that react amidst an imposing chord and harmonic exchange. A continuation of rhythmic turbulence follows on “Indelible Taint” while dissonant tones emerge within its heaviness, and this decisive assault drifts into a groove that extends into arpeggiated melody. Anguished screams reflect a finalizing aura, and the work ultimately returns to the static-like calm of its initial void.

            Dark psychological torments involving death, pain, and murder are experienced lyrically, beginning with death personified as “Eternal and erosive” while having “No consciousness restraint nor mercy” on “Splintered.” The worst infliction from this entity is highlighted during the aptly titled “Greatest Pain,” which explores child loss from a parent’s perspective as he “Loses his immortality and purpose of life” and endures pain likened to a “Depthless abyss.” Dark imagery continues alongside these themes when “13th Chamber” is described as “Such a lair of shades and melancholy” with “An oppressive agony of madness,” and here a “Fire of pain and hate” is ”Extinguished by last breath out.” Fear enters this formula on “Torturous Presence,” with senses perceiving a “Freezing anthem of fright” that is “Analogous to dark cells of asylums.” Madness is linked again with fear toward a “Whisper raving voice,” and “Sated By Domination” also conjures an “Oppressive and stuffy” setting where “You are choking with a stench of fear.”

            A Soldier’s perspective also comes to mind on this track in statements like “You’ll cross a border with smell of a murder,” and numerous violent tendencies noted throughout seem rooted in social torments and fears depicted on “Indelible Taint.” It describes how one “Persecuted in youth” is led “To gradual aberration,” and they attain “Gratification and domination, in tormenting animals.” Their “Unbounded psychosis” grows, with this becoming “Gradually not enough, evil seeking continues,” and the question of “Where else can you go?” is answered with an apparent serial killer deemed a “Born handyman of pathology and wrath” and “Practitioner of old school cannibalism” on “Furious Pictures and Agony.”

            Killing takes a different form with the choices contemplated on “Disheartening Temptation,” where “It all dwells in your eyes, to kill or not to,” and premeditation is shown when staging “Just a fall from the stairs, unfortunate accident.” Committing this act “Comes with a sacrifice,” which leads full circle and back to psychosis when “Hearing strange voices in my head” on “Splintered.” It ends with the “Madness of mirror laughing at me,” and with that mirror also bearing a “Reflection of my cruelty.” These interesting portrayals of suffering and insanity surely capture the “essence of tyranny,” and they complement the music while emphasizing a realism in various styles of violence and carnage.

            BRUTE continues forging a merciless path on Essence of Tyranny, and this output is inclined toward a direct onslaught with the fierce extent of its arrangements. The riffs are laden with melodic components that rage throughout with noted precision, and their intricacies compound the overall intensity while darker disturbances are produced by visceral melodies and other samples. These reflect the lyrical substance and often surface during groove sections, which exhibit multiple sides to the personality dwelling within, and a notable strength lies in areas of unpredictable shift between rhythmic qualities as they accumulate into vortexes of utter devastation. This force is honed successfully as BRUTE inflicts a gratifying impact with Essence of Tyranny, and its surgical hooks will easily snare those seeking its wrath.

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