Montreal natives Smirking Revenge’s first full-length record and second release overall, Disastearth, is everything you could want in a death metal record. Oddly enough, there are also a lot of things you might find on an avant-garde indie rock record. The album opens with the title track, a song that is a meter-less collection of eerie steel drum sounds, creepy whispers, and the occasional scream of agony. The all girl band make you listen to it for over three minutes, which takes balls.
From there, the record goes in all sorts of deep and dark directions. “Unreached Dreams” alone has enough riffs to make the average metal fan salivate. Lead screamer Marie Claude Gosselin sounds like a legion of demons with her sheer range of different grunts and growls.
There are all kinds of influences shining through on this thing. Some of the dirtier riffs sound like something that you might hear on the first couple Korn records. The eclectic shifts in tone, however, are more in line with Between the Buried and Me’s Alaska or Behemoth’s Demigod. In Flames comes out in the more melodic sections, and there are even some early 00’s metalcore breakdowns thrown in with surprisingly solid results.
And then there’s that last song, “Lies Par Le Sang.” If you’ve ever wondered what The Velvet Underground might have sounded like if they were a death metal band – which, I mean, I don’t see why you’d have ever wondered that – here’s your answer. Some spoken word French poetry gives way to Gosselin screaming like a banshee over clean strummed chords, and the whole thing is as pleasant as it is grating. Then the ending is about as post-rock as it gets.
This record is perfect for the little hipster devil who whispers in all of our ears.
Written by Syd Ghan
*edited by Danielle Kenedy