Looking For An Answer – Dios Carne Review

If there’s two things I know about Spain, it’s that the rain there falls mainly on the plain, and that Spanish death metal bands have a great way with that thick, oozing, rotten sound, and that no one expects the Spanish Inquisition…

If there’s THREE things I know about Spain…

But seriously, folks…

Spanish bands like Machetazo, Avulsed, Cruz, et al, each have a certain crypt-level heaviness, all thick tones and gnarled riffs, indebted to the Swedish-styled buzz but something not so much behind it as beside it, something all its own. Compared to those bands, Looking For An Answer is closest to the former, largely because Looking For An Answer isn’t really a death metal band, at least not wholly. Taking inspiration from the earliest days of grindcore – think Terrorizer, Repulsion – Looking For An Answer blends that fetid Iberian death tone with blasting, ripping grind, and the results are as strong as that description would warrant.

Looking For An Answer’s two main weapons lie in that punchy, almost-buzzsaw tone; and in their songcraft, in the balance of their death/grind blend: From the death metal side, they bring some seriously catchy riffs – from the first minute of Dios Carne, that much is evident; witness the stomping intro to “Deflagracion,” which is the kind of epic, simple, and yet totally pit-worthy groove that a thousand slam-death bands would kill to write. Hooky riffs emerge elsewhere, too – in the thrashy bits of “Invierno Eterno,” in the doom-trudging six-minute “Muerte Lenta,” in the killer “Martir Matarife.” And from the grind side comes the blasting aggression, the razor-sharp pounding of “La Carne del Leviatan” and “Nemesis” and “Liberacion.” Add the two together, and it’s a damned good formula for a damned good record, equal parts memorable and destructive.

For Dios Carne, former Nashgul vocalist Santi has replaced longtime growler Inaki, but both have a similar style, so the switchover is almost unnoticeable. While 2011’s Eterno Treblinka was a strong slice of grind, by all standards, Dios Carne is stronger, by all the same – the production is sharper, the tones more punishing; the songs are a better combination of the band’s elements, from tremolo-picked death metal to blasthappy grinding. It’s a fine line between that earthy production and the wet-blanket muffling that’s ruined many a record, but Dios Carne thankfully sticks on the proper side of that line, keeping the guitars stout and sharp, and the bass fuzzed but not fuzzed-out.

In eighteen years, Looking For An Answer has only managed four full-lengths, and it’s been six years since that last one. They don’t move quickly, but the results more than make up for the delay. Anyone with even the slightest passing interest in vicious and dank grinding will find much to love on Dios Carne. And for those like me who wonder how to get more of that sweet sweet noxious headache, well… (ahem)… here’s the answer you’re looking for.

Posted by Andrew Edmunds

Last Rites Co-Owner; Senior Editor; born in the cemetery, under the sign of the MOOOOOOON...

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