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Brutus – Murwgebeukt

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Certainly wasn’t expecting a new Brutus album. Especially since the self chosen death of drummer Ploegbaas, I always figured Brutus was a thing of the past now. Obviously, I was wrong, because here I sit listening to their new effort ‘Murwgebeukt’. The remaining Brutus members have joined forces with drummer Yuma van Eekelen (Exivious, ex-Pestilence) and shat out the follow up to 2003’s ‘Slachtbeest’. It took me a few turns before I really got into ‘Murwgebeukt’, which is usually a good sign. At first, it made a mostly onedimensional impression on me. Probably mostly due to the hammering drums, which for a lot time stick to one pace. This sometimes causes the music to lack dynamics. Somehow I think the Brutus boys aren’t interested in dynamics too much, but more in releasing a relentless beast of an album. After a while you start noticing that there is plenty variation in the riffwork. Brutus manage to shift seamlessly from more old school Immolation style to a more technical Dying Fetus-esque sound.The dry and welldefined guitarsound offers no room for letting your attention slip. It grabs you by the throat and keeps it jammed in a tight grip. Unfortunately the bass could use a little more body, and I’m no big fan of the mechanical sounding bass drums and ugly tom sound. But this is definitely a good album. The first half has some true killers like ‘Vernederd’, ‘Verbolgen'(check that riffwork!) and ‘Rubensvrouw’, but in my humble opinion they saved the best for the second half of the album. Starting with ‘Geestesziek'(outstanding bassdrums) and the title track with its fantastically pounding midsection that lead into the merciless end of the song. This all flows fluently into ‘Synopsis’, that has some touches of Monstrosity, on to my favorite of the album, ‘Teloorgang’. This one really shines with its blackened atmosphere and melancholic touches. Quite a different take compared to the rest of the album. To conclude: Brutus have delivered a worthy successor to ‘Slachtbeest’ and prove they are still a relevant player in the world of death metal. (Stijn)