[Logo and Artwork by GruesomeGraphx]
If you’re familiar at all with some of science fiction’s most amazing biological transformation machines, you’ll remember that virtually none of them was able to produce the monumental change for good (or evil) envisioned by its creator. The shrinking machine, the telepod computer, and perhaps history’s greatest ever might-have-been, the transmogrifier, for example, are famous mostly for their spectacular failures. The astute observer will notice, though, that their creators – Wayne Szalinski, Seth Brundle, and yes even Calvin – and countless others, for all their initial joyous curiosity, ended up forgetting all about that all-important lifeblood of true adventure: fun (accidentally ensuing hijinks notwithstanding).
Those aspiring to create such an artificial metamorphosis device without sacrificing the joie de vivre that sparked the idea in the first place would do well to emulate relative newcomer to the transfiguration game, Myk Colby, the guy who puts the fun in modifica… uh… fun.
Now, to the casual observer, the plasmodulator may seem like the latest headscratcher on offer from the Unnecessary Inventions guy, but consider this: why does everything feel like shit these days? Why do we seem constantly at the precipice of the world’s demise?
Having turned his eye for the decrepit and dying to the general state of, well… everything, Myk Colby discovered that, at the heart of it all, it’s the monsters. They’ve grown restless. Tireless toil in his fetid foundry led to the discovery that osdm has been downtuned so often for so long that the eldritch horrors that death metal celebrates have grown weary under the weight. All work and no play, after all. The beasties need a break. They want to party!
Jeez, what do we do about that?
Plasmodulate ‘em, that’s what!
Doc Colby’s Plasmodulated demonstration gives us a wonderful glimpse into a world where death metal has retained its youth and its vigor, the tuning is standard, and the goal is to scare the neighbors a little and perturb them a lot and to have a ton of fun doing it.
This demo should probably be considered the pregame for an upcoming abomination blowout and holey membranes does it get things off to a banging start. It’s 5 songs evenly spread over 15 minutes that pound and pummel and sling slime and get all gross and nasty like a dive bar full of Brundleflies all amped up and rollin’.
The Plasmodulated demo plays like a collection of mad scientist’s schizophrenic notes: methodical and precise to the writer, frighteningly abstruse to the observer. Some hapless explorer begins the account with the accidental discovery of an “Intolerable Stench Place,” marked by indecipherable guttural rumblings and heaving pulsations and the writhing screeches of gross magic, culminating finally in the poor guy’s abduction.
Track #2, “Gross Cave” is what you might get if Chris Black made old school death metal, mega heavy but also bright in the way of a stalactite’s glistening drip and somehow uplifting. It’s not all fun and games, though, as the second half slows all the way down to an acrid asphyxiation. Unless wringing the life from some poor experimental cave prisoner is your idea of fun and… well, of course it is. Why else would you be here?
More disgusting fun follows through “Microscopic Horror,” where the foundational transmutational processes clearly take place, to an entry describing the “Plasmodulated” and finally to the end state: “Protoplasmic Transformation,” all of it pure death metal heavy and as fun as the horror movie you can’t bring yourself to turn away from any more than you can bear watch.
Maybe Myk Colby is a hero, finding a pathway to fun in the perpetual doom and gloom of the 2020’s. It’s nice to think so. It could also be, though, looking back at the course of things laid out in his Plasmodulated demo, that he’s offering something a little less… wholesome. It seems the plasmodulator’s actual function, and thus the real aim here, may be the solution to modern woes via the dissolution of our bodies into a barely sentient goo that just doesn’t care anymore.
Well… some days I suppose I’d welcome even that. So either way, I guess. As long as he’s having fun.