If you were lucky enough to hear The Unforgiving Arms Of God, the debut EP from grindcore collective END, then you’ll be well aware of how devastating they are. Well, a couple of years later and the group are back with their full-lengther, Splinters From An Ever Changing Face, and they’re more punishing than ever.
Hurtling straight into opener “Covet Not,” END have dispensed with any form of pleasantry as they career from 0 to 100 in about three seconds. An unrelenting, unpleasant, unforgiving blast of grindcore meets hardcore, this teeth-rattler of an opener sets the tone for the rest of the record. Nasty as shit, this is just a heads-down race to the finish line not stopping for anyone or anything. Through the controlled chaos of “Pariah” and the frankly terrifying “Absence,” the extreme metal outfit finish mauling your senses with “The Reach of Resurrection,” two and a half minutes of bile-soaked grind. Splinters From An Ever Changing is not a fun record by any stretch of the imagination.
Counterparts singer Brendan Murphy fronts the band with his vocals lending the perfect abrasive touch to already nasty offerings like “Fear For Me Now” and “Captive To My Curse.” The latter, one of a couple of tracks on this disc that run just shy of two minutes, are perfect examples how of tight this band is as a unit. Classed by some as an extreme metal supergroup, it comes as no surprise that tracks like the aforementioned “Captive To My Curse” are delivered with frightening precision. Make no mistake, this is a chaotic record however, give the quality of musicianship displayed here, there comes a sense of control that stops this album descending into utter noise.
Of course, given the pedigree of a band who features members/ex-members of Misery Signals, The Dillinger Escape Plan and Shai Hulud, you’d expect Splinters From An Ever-Changing Face to be close to flawless and it is. It’s as devasting and focused a display as you could want from an extreme metal band and, as they follow-up the caustic “Every Empty Vein” with the chugging, pounding “Sands Of Sleep,” you’ll struggle to pick fault with this incredible display of extremity.
Splinters From An Ever-Changing Face Track Listing:
1. Covet Not
4. The Reach Of Resurrection
5. Fear For Me Now
6. Hesitation Wounds
7. Captive To My Curse
8. Evening Arms
9. An Apparition
10. Every Empty Vein
11. Sands Of Sleep
Run Time: 32:55
Release Date: June 5, 2020
Record Label: Closed Casket Activities