St. Paul, Minnesot'as True Metal Record Store (RIP as of Dec. 24, 2015)
Hello all, and welcome to the penultimate edition of Death Metal Monday where we’ve again been handed a dearth of useful choices thanks to the quirks of our English alphabet. Today we’ll hop the Atlantic to Poland to feature YATTERING, the only “Y” band that readily sprang to mind when I realized I’d eventually hit this sticking point a while back.
Although mostly forgotten now, in part because of an ill-advised techno/electronic album at the tail end of their career, YATTERING enjoyed some success in the early ’00s, including a licensing deal with Relapse Records for their sophomore work Murder’s Concept. Of everything in their career though, I think the 1998 debut Human’s Pain is their slab of Polish death metal most deserving of revisitation. So how does it hold up?
From the word go YATTERING throw a few curveballs, the most overtly annoying of which are the dry and distorted vocals trading places with the competent, if generic, lead growls. Boiling beneath those is a percussive and strongly American take on death metal not unlike that of many of the late 90s/early 00s Polish scene (godfathers VADER, DIES IRAE, TRAUMA, DEVILYN, HATE, etc.). Unlike the others, however, YATTERING’s influence was less MORBID ANGEL and more CANNIBAL CORPSE; less esoteric blasting and more bass-rich blunt force trauma, with some well-intentioned variation and a slight nod to melody along the way. The skill on display on Human’s Pain is immense and undeniable on all fronts and makes for a pleasant listen for those death metallers who remember the million directions of the late 1990s and its time of confusion for the genre.
For all that though, it’s YATTERING’s touch of adventurism, i.e. unbridled enthusiasm for complex riff salad, that gets them in trouble. These songs pass by as landscape through the window of a high-speed train: impressive at any given moment but very difficult to recall in the aggregate when the ride is through. There are next to zero hooks or rhythmic tricks working as signposts within the songs to provide the listener any sense of location or direction, which is unfortunate given the obvious raw talent at work in the performance.
Thankfully there are other Polish gems available and worthy of your admiration, among them VADER’s first classic The Ultimate Incantation. And for a litany of other mile-a-minute, riff-a-second death metal bands, Into the Void Records has you covered. If you’re still intrigued by Human’s Pain after your introductory listen Discogs can sate your desire for techy Euro death metal on the cheap with this one.
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