Artist: Murder Capital
Album: The Mortality Model – EP
Think about the things that make humans human. Areas of the brain (the neocortex, specifically) responsible for higher thinking? The ability to make decisions, feel complex emotions, interact with social hierarchy? Yeah, fair, those are all pretty distinct human traits. However, at the bottom of it all, before we had social structure, an understanding of complex emotions, so on and so forth, we, as humans, had an innate understanding—or at least a fear—of death. We are, by default, critically aware of our own mortality. In spite of that (or maybe because of that) we’ve developed a unique relationship with violence, in that is has expanded beyond a means for survival, but a past-time or hobby for some—the members of crushing Canadian metalcore act Murder Capital included. Combining raw, ruthless heavy hardcore and beatdown with metalcore and elements of slam mixed in, the band’s breakout release The Mortality Model is a savage, short-but-sweet display of modern metalcore mastery from a prodigally talented young band, lashing out on their debut record, letting loose with about twenty minutes of sheer terror.
Instrumentally, The Mortality Model is equal parts straight-up metalcore and one part slam-infused-beatdown-accented-heavy-hardcore. What does that mean? Well, it boils down to this: fundamentally, Murder Capital are heavy. A little more detail—which is probably why you’re reading this—elaborates that the band take an early-wave metalcore approach and infuse it with some raw, raunchy slams and over-the-top breakdowns that turn the EP’s teeth into fangs. Songs like “Detox” highlight this excellently, where quick, punchy percussion serves as the jumping-off point for pure aggression that shows itself as riff-heavy intensity just as readily as it boasts pure, relentless brutality. Other songs, “Fatal Patterns” or “Apostasy” are similar in nature, lending themselves a little more readily to belligerent aggression than they do a blending of riff-savvy structure and riveting, raunchy hatred (“204,” “Detox” and “Panic” are your go-to cuts for that aspect of the band’s dynamic. If we’re being frank, Murder Capital’s The Mortality Model doesn’t do anything tremendously new—but it does expertly blend elements of hardcore, metal and more with sharp production and prodigal talent that would fool the otherwise uninformed listener into thinking this young act were older heads in the underground music scene than they otherwise are.
The Mortality Model’s M.O. of murderous aggression doesn’t let up when it comes Murder Capital’s vocal element or lyrical content. Touching on addiction, depression, and everything else ranging from the introspective to explosive scales of aggressive sentiment, Murder Capital lash out with wonton disregard for who suffers the stinging of their figurative fists. While “204” serves as a scathing introduction to the band’s vocal element, lead single “Detox” likely highlights it best, bringing in the best of the band’s vocal diversity with the most hard-hitting and personal lyrical content. Comprised primarily of a meaty, thick roar, The Mortality Model uses lower registers and oppressive, unremitting patterns to batter the listener’s eardrum, taking rare breaks from gutbusting growls to catch the listener totally off guard with shrill, raw yells. “204” sees this dynamic working smoothly, as does “Apostasy.” Again—Murder Capital’s major differentiating factor when it comes to their vocal element lies not within the range or diversity employed by the band’s frontman, but by the variety of topics used as lyrical fodder, and the smooth, fluid way in which they are all linked together.
Murder Capital’s debut EP isn’t one of those records someone is going to hear and think “man, I’ve never heard another band like this.” And that’s okay. Drawing overt influence from the likes of Kublai Khan (Tx), The Acacia Strain and Bodysnatcher, The Mortality Model is relentless, remorseless heaviness—and that’s really all you need to know about it to catch the gist of the band’s sales pitch. From start to finish, Murder Capital bewilder and bludgeon the listener with catchy, crushing aggression, doing their name—and the fleeting nature of mankind’s mortality—proud.
For Fans Of: Kublai Khan, Varials, The Acacia Strain, Bodysnatcher
By: Connor Welsh