REVIEW: Obliterate – Obliterate [EP/2014]


Artist: Obliterate

Album: Obliterate – EP


Obliterate (v): To destroy, utterly wipe out or condemn to extinction. When one thinks of obliteration, often times, it’s a severe, intense reaction. When it isn’t enough to break something (or someone), and destroying them doesn’t quite cut it,  there’s only one way to express the true boundless sentiment of hate that has overcome you—they must be obliterated. Their flesh torn asunder, blood drained and bones ground to dust—they must be reduced to nothingness, surviving only in memory. This is the fate ascribed to the listener upon beginning Quebec-based deathcore outfit Obliterate’s latest self-titled release. What lies in within is a soundtrack of pure violence and aural annihilation: combining heavy, blood-spattering slams with skin-shredding blast beats and riff-heavy fretwork, Obliterate is one band that has absolutely no trouble living up to their name.

Obliterate’s instrumental dynamic is one that can best be described as dense. Once “A Filth Rejection” gets started, there is simply no stopping Obliterate from wreaking pure musical mayhem. Furious fretwork from the hands of Hubert Therrien and Marcus Adam claw at the listener with razor-sharp riffs, and bludgeon them into submission with dissonant, chugged-out and catastrophic breakdowns—with little error in transitioning between the two. “I Am God” is a perfect example of this; opening with a catchy, grotesque groove, but quickly devolving into pure destruction as chug after chug crack bones and bruise flesh without effort or remorse. However, the low-ends to Therrien and Adam’s fretwork wouldn’t be complete without deep, writhing bass guitar, provided by the masterful fingers of Pier Luc-Tardif. Luc-Tardif keeps effortless time with the driving, energetic percussion and intense guitar all while adding a beefy, heavy candor to Obliterate’s sound, making even the fast-and-furious, stinging riffs hit like a sledge hammer. All of these snapping strings and crushing chugs roar overtop of a non-stop barrage provided by percussionist Pat Woods. Woods assaults the listener with everything in a drummer’s ideal arsenal: blast beats, fills and faster-than-fast kick drum work, all to provide a comprehensive, vivid instrumental forest for the vocals to set fire to.

The mammoth, earth-shaking musicianship alone could ring true to Obliterate’s much-deserved name—however, that would be too easy. Rather than provide the listener with a quick-and-painless demise, Remi Provencher is there to carefully and cruelly skin the listener, slice by sinister slice. With every intense, sky-high shriek and low, filthy bellow, Provencher carves flesh from bone, reducing the listener to rubble. However—he isn’t alone. Joined by Fred Beaulieu (of Beheading a King) and Dominic D.D. (of Depths of Hatred), Provenchers already-impressive vocal prowess is amplified, giving Obliterate a vocal dynamic that is practically unstoppable—even if it isn’t entirely clear where Provencher’s shouts end and Beaulieu’s screams begin. All the same, no matter who is shouting what, tracks like “Relentless” are just that—relentless—stopping at nothing to completely annihilate the listener, unleashing every kind of visceral, harsh noise heard to man.

Obliterate waste no time in unleashing an immeasurably dense assault on the listener—likely because they have no time to waste. Unfortunately for the band (yet perhaps fortunately for the listener’s sanity), Obliterate is a brief display of unabashed brutality. Even after the ambient and much-needed reprieve of the outro track (cleverly named “Outro”), the listener is still left wanting—itching to start the release again from scratch and undergo another round of intense, decimating hatred. Even with a less-than-ideal run time, however, Obliterate still succeed in providing a crushingly comprehensive display of deathcore with an instrumental dynamic akin to veterans of the genre—Thy Art is Murder comes to mind—and vocal work that one would usually expect from two or even three main vocalists.

In the end as it was the beginning, there will be nothing—at least not by the time Obliterate are done with you. With riffs and breakdowns that destroy without discrimination, and vocals that aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty and tear the listener apart, there is no “warm and fuzziness” to be had from these Canadian Chuggernauts. Rather, there is only hatred. Hatred and violence.



For Fans Of: Thy Art Is Murder, Despised Icon, WolveXhys, Oceano, Whitechapel

By: Connor Welsh