In the annals of death metal history, there are a handful of scenes that get exalted to the top (for good reason), which include the famous Florida sound, the Stockholm HM2 sound and so on. Unfortunately, a handful of scenes have not had that same fortune and remain praised only by the genre’s greatest fanatics. One such example of this is the Mexican scene, home to death metal loyalists like The Chasm, Shub Niggurath, Cenotaph and many others. Among this already underrated scene stands Lost Harvest, a band that originally began their history in Mexico before relocating to Texas. Despite this change of scenery, the band has remained loyal to their country’s own brand of Death Metal which was first unleashed with 2018’s ‘Capitulum’ and now explored further with ‘Deluded Seas of Diverge’.
So far we have made an allusion to the band playing Mexican Death Metal, but what do we mean exactly by this? Well, the Mexican scene has always felt unique in their ability to marry traditional Death Metal with a whole set of metal influences – drawing from Black, Thrash and even Doom. There is no better exponent of this sound than the stalwarts of the scene, The Chasm, of which Lost Harvest are no doubt indebted. The result of this cauldron of influences is a record that defies genre conventions. Calling this record a “Death Metal” album is extremely limiting as it does much more than that. The way the duo of Immolhector and Endosteum weave together riffs is enthralling – jumping from galloping and furious thrashy sections to soaring passages that elicit an epic feeling. None of the songs stay put, always furiously transitioning between different tempos while not sacrificing the compositional magic of the songs.
One thing that really stands out in this record is the way guitarist Endosteum adds in many acoustic guitar passages both within the intros and bodies of the songs, creating a more layered experience. The talent of both guitarists is also evident in the way they write melodies to evoke different moods within the same songs. One good example of this is ‘Clandestine Epoch of Our Last Generation’. The melodies here take a dual approach, giving a sense of malice and urgency but also at one point taking a more majestic and regal feeling.
The vocals are Immolhector are solid growls, but occasionally varied by Hector attempting his best Tom Araya scream impression. There never seems to be a set mood for this record, with its dizzying change of pace. This can be heard in a track like ‘Ramus’, where the gorgeous opening gives way to a more doom-laden passage with an ominous feel. Here you see many of the best qualities of the musicians on display, with their long instrumental passages, a chance to indulge in some nasty bass work, frantic drum fills or well-crafted dual guitar harmonies.
With this sophomore, the band have crafted an extremely savage yet elegant death metal album that seeks to take you on a journey to another realm – just as The Chasm has done in the past. Of course, I cannot end this review without mentioning Lost Harvest’s own tribute to the band with their cover of ‘My Tideless Seas’ – with the track only somewhat resembling the original. Instead, the band have managed to forge their own unique take on the track and making it memorable.
Albums that set out with these sorts of intentions can fail under the weight of their own ambition, but not Lost Harvest. This Texan duo deserve the attention of those who want the sort of adventurous Death Metal that takes you on a journey beyond your comfort zone. My only bit of criticism levelled at this album is the mixing, which is forgivable given that this record was a very DIY effort. Sadly, because of this and lack of general promotion, it has not reached as much people as it should. This is a shame, because this is the type of Death Metal that should get more exposure.