Torn The Fuck Apart – A Genetic Predisposition To Violence

Rating: 3.5/5
Distributor/label: Gore House Productions
Released: 2018
Buy Album: https://gorehouseproductions.bandcamp.com/album/a-genetic-predisposition-to-violence
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/ttfabandpage/

BAND LINE-UP:

Michael Langner – Vocals & Guitar,
Nick Yeates – Guitar,
Brandon Mitchell – Bass,
Jake Page – Drums.

TRACKLISTING:

1. It Jammed The Woodchipper
2. Invitation Homicide
3. These Pliers Are Terrible For Pulling Teeth
4. In The Confines Of Fear
5. Dad’s Head For Dinner
6. Abhorrent Existence
7. Boiled, Chopped & Slopped
8. Collection Complete
9. The Object Of Obsession
10. Compulsion To Torture

REVIEW

Death metal, or more universally metal, has this wonderful quality for portraying negatives in a positive way. Yes, pulling out entrails and using them as a bloodied, fleshy skipping rope is nasty business, but songs of this ilk help purge negativity. Horror films have a similar ability, with an emotional catharsis that leaves behind a lighter-hearted viewer (though that light fluttering may be terrified palpitations). So how do the bastions of bloody bludgeoning TORN THE FUCK APART fare in their attempts?

One of the most charming aspects of “A Genetic Predisposition To Violence” is the subtle tongue-in-cheek humour that rears its head across the album. If the soundbites offered in bloody opener “It Jammed The Woodchipper” and the bloody disgusting interlude “Boiled, Chopped & Slopped” are one example, the song titles are an obvious second. Alongside the above, “These Pliers Are Terrible For Pulling Teeth” and “Dad’s Head For Dinner” are prime, gory cuts that slay with the wriest of smiles and a quick wink. It’s not enough to become a parody, but it’s done just right to toe the line between the usual bloody genre conventions and all-out comedy.

Not only do TORN THE FUCK APART manage to balance serious, blockbuster mutilation with the gentle tittering that arises from exaggerated B-movie slashers, but they keep their brand of death metal on an even keel. Musically, it’s old school meets new school, with old school tone marrying modern riffage. The production, though clear and concise enough so as to not jump out at the listener, is still a little rough and rugged, giving it an oddly earthy feel. Riffage: not too basic, but not too techy either; just a delicate union between the two, which makes “A Genetic Predisposition To Violence” a rather pleasant listen.

It’s not going to be troubling anyone for originality, but that needn’t be a concern. There’s a freshness to the groovy stomp and chilling whispers of “Invitation Homicide”, as well as the wailing leads for “Abhorrent Existence” that become staples throughout the album. The surprise package, however, comes in the form of “The Object Of Obsession”: a well-executed instrumental that is both melodic and heavy at the same time. It’s a delightful twist late on that allows for breath to be drawn before unleashing the ferocious beating of galloping closer “Compulsion To Torture”. This is where careful, considered writing enables a band to surface amongst the rest, so the fact that TORN THE FUCK APART have the nous to provide relief and context for the butchery is exemplary.

Thus, “A Genetic Predisposition To Violence” should certainly be lauded for the tremendous ability to balance. The old school sound with modern writing, coupled with genre-typical gore and sprinkled with humour is no easy feat to manage, yet here we are. If death metal wasn’t the band’s forté, then the trapeze wire at the circus could beckon. It’s not perfect – “In The Confines Of Fear” should be part of “Dad’s Head For Dinner” or regarded as superfluous, and the originality is lacking, but it’s enjoyable nonetheless. So if you, like TORN THE FUCK APART, have a genetic predisposition to violence (or just like hearing the sonic representation of such), then “A Genetic Predisposition To Violence” will provide all you and your decaying basement corpses could want.

REVIEW BY LEE CARTER
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