REVIEW: Drowner – “Dead” [Single/2014]


Artist: Drowner

Release: Dead – Single


It starts with a trickle, leaking in between pursed lips and gapped teeth—water spraying into your mouth and down your throat. Still, even as you clench harder, squeezing your eyelids tight and balling your fists, the pressure builds and builds the deeper your body careens towards its watery grave. Before long, anatomy gives way to physics, as water kicks in your two front teeth and fills your lungs, flattening the once grape-like clusters of alveoli into pancakes. This experience, this abysmal, brooding fate is death—death at the hands of Drowner, a fresh studio side-project of two members from Michiganian deathcore masters Isolations. Trading in furiously fretted, riff-driven mayhem and skin-peeling blast beats, Drowner bury the listener in layer after layer of crushing, leaden heaviness, piling dense, deathcore atmosphere on top of hard-hitting, raunchy beatdown to create a low, slow and brutal behemoth that is sure to set the listener in a stranglehold.

“Dead” starts heavy and doesn’t get any lighter—in fact, as the track progresses, its density and unyielding, oppressive assault on the listener amplifies. The guitars, oscillating between haunting, eerie riffs and demoralizing, skull-crushing chugs start relatively quick, but over the three-minute tidal wave of crush get slower and deeper, cracking ribs with each dissonant note. The percussion follows suit, adding speed only to sneak in clever, flashy fills where they fit best. On top of it all, the vocals weave their way inside the listener’s head and give birth to evil, depressive thoughts—those that favor death over life, villainy over virtue. Every aspect of Drowner’s debut track, “Dead,” is soul-smothering in its own right—however, when combined and allowed to coalesce, the final product is darker, heavier and more sinister than the sum of its part. “Dead” is a display of pure, unbridled destruction that will rush inside the listener’s lungs and expand, filling every airway and bursting every artery until they are laid completely to waste.



For Fans Of: Traitors, Eavesdropper, Black Tongue, Bodysnatcher, Alpha Wolf

By: Connor Welsh