Atlanta, Georgia crust grinders Dead in the Dirt have released an album that can be classified as an utter destructive force. The Blind Hole, their first full length, is a sludgy grindcore fest, packed to the brim with blast beats and deep riffing. The trio are releasing this monster on Southern Lord, the new breeding ground for fast, aggressive music. To put it simply, this album is a ripper; twenty two tracks of decimating brutality.
“Suffer” drops the listener off in a war-torn environment, the drums beating down like bombs dropping — the thunderous rage in full swing as Dead in the Dirt starts off their LP, blitzing the listener with a barrage of grinding crust. The speed from this track does not let up, as it continues over into “The Blaring Eye”. These two tracks, back to back, induce whiplash; Dead in the Dirt moves at such a quick pace and with such intensity that one is blindsided by the sheer ferocity.
As the album moves along, tracks like “You Bury Me” have sludgy overtones amidst the fast paced intensity. “Cop” starts off with a slow, doomy breakdown that ushers in the blast beats. Dead in the Dirt switch up styles; “The Pit of Me”, a coma inducing sludge breakdown that lasts until the waning moments, until the band kicks it into gear again, with a punch right in the chest of merciless dis-beat drumming and tight riffing. The vocals on “The Pit of Me” are wretched — these sickening growls come forth as the track slowly lurches forward. Dead in the Dirt’s riffing starts to become massive as the sludgier tones seep in; the heaviness of the album comes through the cracks in full force, bludgeoning the listener over the head with twisted, menacing, crust-influenced chords.
“Caged” is one of the truly unique tracks on the album. Eerie guitar sounds creep out to open the track, giving off a haunting feel before moving closer to the abyss. Clocking in around the one minute mark, “Caged” is makes the listener feel trapped and helpless within the confines of its discordant breed of blackened hardcore. There is no escape from the overall heaviness; the seemingly out-of-sync guitar pattern amplifies the aura surrounding the track. “Caged” paves the way for the next one, “Starve”, which is a brutalizing combination of d-beat and blast beats, with a very catchy riff.
“Pitch Black Tomb” is a tune in vein of heavy hitters From Ashes Rise. There is throaty bass, crunching drum patterns, and heavy guitar tones that give way to the rising and falling action of the track. It is utterly devastating and a fine example of Dead in the Dirt’s ability to play fluidly in any style they so choose. As the track thins out and fuzz begins to take over, the process begins anew as “The Last Nail” starts. Thirty seconds of unrelenting and manic mayhem. The last track, “Halo Crown”, is the longest, around three minutes in length. Here, the doom influence comes full circle. The bass is full of despair; such dark noises emanate from the amp as the track regresses into the void. It is like trodding through the desert with no water; there is nothing in sight for miles and one must endure the hardship it entails. “Halo Crown” is so murky and thick that the instruments spew such blackness upon the listener, like crawling out of your skin and digging your nails into the ground.
The overall tone of The Blind Hole is dark; a completely menacing, mad-scientist concoction filled with ranging influences that bubble over and pour out over every single song. Dead in the Dirt jams their album full of said influences, while maintaining a sound that is very different from all the other acts in these genres. These vegan crust warriors have released something so mind-alteringly intense that it should be heralded as one of the heaviest releases Southern Lord has to offer. A wicked combination of crust, grind, d-beat, and sludge pave the way for a unique record that is sure to please fans of both metal and hardcore alike.
The album will be available in August from Southern Lord.
8/01/2013 Crosstown Arts – Memphis,TN
8/02/2013 Bad Grannies – Oklahoma City, OK
8/03/2013 The Gas Works – Albuquerque, NM
8/04/2013 Cottage House – Flagstaff, AZ
8/05/2013 TBA – Las Vegas, NV
8/06/2013 Munoz Gym – Bakersfield, CA
8/07/2013 TBA – Sacramento, CA
8/08/2103 DAY OFF
8/09/2013 Filipino Community Center – San Jose, CA
8/10/2013 Echoplex – Los Angeles, CA
8/11/2013 Che Cafe – San Diego, CA*
8/12/2013 Aladdins JR – Pomona, CA*
8/13/2013 The Shitty Pot – Phoenix,AZ*
8/14/2013 Tiny Town – Tucson, AZ*
8/15/2013 TBA – El Paso, TX*
8/16/2013 1011 – San Antonio,TX*
8/17/2013 Rubber Gloves – Denton, TX*
8/18/2013 Rampage Skatepark – Jackson, MS*
* w/ Rapturous Grief