Blast Rites: Deterioration / Trucido – Smudge / Wet Brain (Split) Review

Though it’s clearly not exclusive to the grindcore world, one of the fun things about this crazy sub-genre is the split release, the joy of finding a band you like and then getting a bonus release from a different band on the flip-side of every piece of vinyl… or the back half of every CD, or however you prefer.

One of the really fun things about splits, though, is when one comes along and you’re already sold on both bands… Now, that, my friends… that’s a good day, right there. (Admittedly, though, this one’s a strange case, being only a digital release so far, or at least, that I can find — it’s a split, by every indication, but so far there’s nothing that it’s actually splitting…  except perhaps the hairs that I’m splitting by even discussing it. So let’s just skip the whole point and get on to what’s important here: the grinding.)

Release date: December 25, 2022 / January 1, 2023. Label: Bandcamp .
Minnesota’s Deterioration has been pounding skulls for two decades now, most recently displayed on last year’s ravenous Retaliatory Measures. Their brand of brotherly mayhem is represented here by one four-and-a-half-minute track, which is a positively epic length compared to most of their offerings, but “Smudge” shifts through enough tempo changes and turns to make it both a cohesive whole and a journey in itself. In my admittedly loopy brain, I like to think that “Smudge” is the work of – or at least named after – my current favorite internet cat*, but I know – or I’d be willing to bet quite a bit – that it isn’t. Nevertheless, this one new Deterioration ripper exhibits a level of anger and disgust appropriate to the face of that little white feller hissing across the table, his frustrations voiced by Jim Kahmann’s alternating grunts and shrieks and buoyed by choppy and carving chords, and all of it propelled by the thrashing Joe Kahmann gives to his downsized drumkit. Deterioration does what Deterioration does, and “Smudge” is just exactly that, which is exactly this: pure grinding exhilaration. That angry housewife lady doesn’t stand a chance.

Following suit, we have Trucido, whose 2022 debut wormed its way into a few earholes around here, one of 2022’s finest opening salvos. (My erstwhile grind compatriot Mr. Hotz mentioned both it and the Deterioration in his year-end list even, whereas I must shamefully concede that I was dumb and forgetful and did not, though both were deserving.) This Texas-born four-piece shares members with Cognizant — and about a dozen other bands through drummer Bryan Fajardo — and their particular brand of grinding is generally an equally straightforward one to Deterioration’s, all pounding blastbeat and unrelenting fury. Opening with a truly gnarly bass tone, the title track of Trucido’s half shows the band in full force, albeit with a gorier take on the Insect Warfare-ian style presented on A Collection Of Self-Destruction. Irving Lopez slashes through a spate of slippery riffs, chords sliding around dissonant skronk, while Eduardo Hoyes and Fajardo literally grind away beneath, but now Alejandro Ramirez adds a pitch-shifted gurgle to his arsenal of grunts and barks, the burpy blurbling** fitting snugly with the Reek Of Putrefaction-esque meat collage that adorns the cover. All four of these new Trucido tracks are slicer-dicers, all savage, all blood-churning and blood-boiling, all guts, all grind, all great.

So there you have it — two damned great grindcore bands making damned great grindcore; two Blast Rites favorites in one fell swoop, one blast-happy blistering per virtual side of this coöperative co-production. Clearly, I’ve been enjoying via streaming, as I haven’t yet been able to figure out how to actually purchase the Deterioration half — the Trucido half is NYP on Bandcamp, as a quick click above will show you.

Hopefully some physical copies will come along soon, because this one’s an absolute no-brainer for the record collection.


*and my second all-time favorite internet cat. RIP Tardar Sauce: gone, but never forgotten.

**that’s the technical term, for you music nerds.

Posted by Andrew Edmunds

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

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