May 10, 2017

Filthy Music Review - Soulrot - Nameless Hideous Manifestations.

Soulrot - Nameless Hideous Manifestations.

Review by Trevor Proctor.

Soulrot originally formed in 1993 when the band was set up by teenage guitarist JL Olmos in Valparaiso, Chile. The band rehearsed but never released any music and unfortunately didn’t last any longer than a couple of months. Through time JL Olmos became involved with other bands including, among others, local grind band Cranial, Dissident and Fractal. As a result Soulrot lay dormant for a number of years but JL always had a yearning to form his own band and in 2013 Soulrot was resurrected when JL started to write his own music again, which included a few original riffs from Soulrot’s earlier days.

JL went on the hunt for musicians to assist him and soon had enlisted a bassist in the form of JH Wilschrey from local Death Metal band Sadistic Murder along with drummer FRL who was an experienced musician with local grindcore bands such as Obscure Dust and Satanic Cumshot. After a few practices it soon became apparent that the original aim of a one man band with session musicians was not to be, rather they decided to form a full time band with each member bringing his own influences and style to the mix with JH Wilschrey and FRL sharing vocals.
The band performed live a few times before deciding to record a demo entitled ‘Horrors from Beyond’ which was recorded by JH Wilschrey with FRL taking care of production, mixing and mastering. ‘Horrors from Beyond’ was released independently on CD and cassette formats in March 2014 with German label Unholy Prophecies also releasing a cassette version at the same time. The demo was later re-pressed by Morbid Bastard Records in September 2015 in a limited quantity of 50. In 2015 their line-up changed with the addition of a new drummer in the form of Daniel Fredes who played on all subsequent Soulrot releases which include the ‘Revelations’ EP released in 2016 and the ‘From My Grave’ digital single which came out earlier this year.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on one of the Unholy Prophecies tape versions of ‘Horrors from Beyond’ and since then have been keeping track of the band and patiently waiting for their debut full length. Thankfully this wait ended at the end of April when Spanish label Memento Mori released Soulrot’s debut album, ‘Nameless Hideous Manifestations’ on CD in a quantity of 1000, giving this quality Chilean band much wider exposure than ever before.  ‘Nameless Hideous Manifestations’ was produced by bassist/vocalist JH Wilschrey with J Reyes, mixed by J Fredes and mastered by Enormous Door Mastering from the U.S. The artwork for the album is the creation of Juanjo Castellano and the band’s logo was created by J Muñoz. ‘Nameless Hideous Manifestations’ features ten tracks across duration of thirty seven minutes and sees the band taking their music and song writing to a higher level than ever before.  All tracks featured are new with the exception of ‘Incorporeal Autopsy’ and ‘Blackstone’ which are reworked/re-recorded versions of two tracks from the ‘Horrors From Beyond’ demo.

‘Desde el arrecife del diablo...’ serves as a short intro with its tribal drumming and demonic background effects before we’re thrown into ‘Those Who Dwell in the Abyss’ and within a few seconds you’ll be worshiping at the altar of early Swedish Death Metal. 
Soulrot’s sound and inspiration will be instantly recognisable to you and as a result requires little description – if you’re a fan of Nihilist, early Entombed, Dismember, Grave or the ‘buzzsaw’ HM-2 sound popularised by many of these bands in the early 1990’s you’ve came to the right place. Soulrot’s music is littered with heavy breakdowns filled with thick, meaty riffs and JH Wilschrey’s growled vocal instantly brings back memories of a young L-G Petrov. 
The guitar work is exceptional, holding the pace with riff after riff but also spiraling off in all roads and directions with some well-placed solo passages. The production on ‘Nameless Hideous Manifestations’ is obviously more honed than on Soulrot’s previous releases but is by no means clinical and still contains enough dirt to match the filthy riffs. Whilst this style of music has often been used and abused by many fake clones over the years I feel this is definitely not the case with Soulrot, their music is as good as some early Swedish Death Metal releases and bleeds a passion and authenticity that’s been missing from many recent mimics of this style of music. 

Admittedly I don’t listen to a lot of this style of music at the moment but every now and then a release like this comes along and you can’t help but listen. This is a genuine band creating genuine music and believe me, it’s no nostalgia trip, it’s a band carrying the torch of true early Death Metal that many other bands have tried to carry over the years with little or no success. With their debut album under their belt I’m sure, and hope, we’ll hear more from Soulrot – just take a listen to ‘From My Grave’ below and hopefully you’ll agree.

Fantastic debut album 8/10.

01 - Desde el arrecife del diablo... 
02 - Those Who Dwell in the Abyss 
03 - From My Grave 
04 - Ectoplasmic Revelations 
05 - Infertile Anti-Womb 
06 - This Putrid Canvas 
07 - Majestic Rot 
08 - Incorporeal Autopsy 
09 - Blackstone
10 - Transfigured Through the Void.

Nameless Hideous Manifestations by Soulrot is currently available from Memento Mori, and all previous Soulrot releases are available on digital formats from Soulrot's Bandcamp page.

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