SKULL400

EXTIRPATION, Tormentor Supreme Black Katharsis  (2010, Infernal Chaos Productions)

The skull:
Marking our 400th skull in our run up to 666, we can only go with the most bad-ass looking skull in the Skullection. While the fanged lower jaw is fearsome, especially since it’s held in a kind of dish of larger fangs which seem to be ripping the mandible away from the maxilla, it’s the horns that do it. The three pairs of horns are humongous, all twisty and thick, but they don’t look like they’d be good for protection or attack — except for maybe repelling aggressors on the periphery. And, okay, I’m dancing around the true awesomeness here: the two largest horns each have lots of baby horns growing out of them. I’d like to think in 17 years they’ll be mature and as big as the main horns they’re sprouting from, and that this guy will look like a groteseque tangle of tentacled bone that you’d be tempted to shoot at point blank range and put out of his misery. (His neck problems alone would be too much to bear!) Or maybe they’re just little bony spurs or spikes which are dormant and will not get any bigger. I could talk about this skull’s amazing anatomy forever.

The music:
You know there are way, way too many metal bands out there when there are three bands in the 2000s who have recorded material under the name Extirpation. Or, to be less pessimistic:¬† you know all the good band names are taken when there are three bands who have recorded material under the name Extirpation. So, what does this one-man death/black metal band have to offer besides an amazingly horny skull cover? Would you believe one-man death/black metal? It’s fast as hell, inhumanly so, and that’s why this guy uses a drum machine, because there’s no way a human being could play this, at least not this kind of sustained, unyielding flurry of blasts. And Extirpation really leans more on the death metal side. I can’t help but think of Mortician as this nonsensically-titled album flies by. The drum machine and vocals are dead-ringers for Mortician — I also hear some Von and Pillard-era Incantation in the vocals — but Mortician never utilized the kind of riffing technicality that exists here. It’s not Necrophagist or Obscura technical, but for sick, morbid, ugly, fast-as-shit death metal, the riffs are the only semi-sophisticated thing happening in an otherwise primitive landscape. I enjoy this to some degree, the same part of me that digs Nuclear Death, Rottrevore, Disembowelment and such, but Extirpation are ridiculously one-dimensional and it gets old quickly (like Mortician). You can bet we’re pleased as punch that the one man in this one-man band goes by the name of Skullcrushed.
— Friar Wagner

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