The EP opens up with the track “Fathoms” and initially we just have the soft, creepily plucked guitar providing an almost hypnotic introduction; there’s no ascension, no gradual build…it simply lulls and lingers there for just short of a minute, where we then quickly erupt with a visceral dose of tormented, sludge-heavy death metal. The drone of the guitar and the duel-tone vocals of Williams; half demonic growls, half savage snarling giving the track a true sense of viciousness and foreboding…one can only fathom at the depths off hell this came from…”Cranium Tomb” then follows up and wastes absolutely no time whatsoever. After a brief drum flurry we’re right back at it with a lot more emphasis on those guttural growls, which accompanied by their blend of technical death and retro thrash influences, combining a mixture of chord progressions, off-kilter riffs and key-changes; it’s enough to make your skull collapse under the sheer force of uncontrollable head-banging.
The shortest of the five offerings then, is “Pig Iron” and make no mistake, vocally here Williams sounds like tomorrow’s bacon being roughly fucked with a hot iron…and musically it couldn’t be more fitting to soundtrack such a scene. Blunt, full of aggression and assertive, until it just dissipates...blacks out, unable to take anymore. “I, The Marked One” continues with the pummelling though instrumentally there are more subtle hooks coming through the guitar which do stand out, before closing track “Into The Dawn” ends proceedings like we started; with some softly plucked guitar leading into another scorching death metal assault, although again the guitar does provide a touch more melody this time around. So, the question remains, are the bear and the bull simply part of the set up to a punch-line? Not really no, as they are as every bit as ferocious and intimidating as the animals they represent from a musical standpoint, and if you prefer to be mauled by your metal then be sure to check these out. Not a fan of the vocals? They’ve even got you covered there as the EP has 5 additional purely instrumental cuts for you to get whiplash to, but you don’t get the full level of intensity as was intended. Don’t get too attached though, odds on you’ll not be seeing them live…and that’s a load of bull!