Carnal Decay – When Push Comes To Shove

Rating: 2.5/5
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Released: 2018
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Band line-up:

Sebastian Mantel – Drums
Nasar Skripitskij – Bass
Isabelle Iten – Guitar
Michael Kern – Vocals


1. When Push Comes To Shove
2. Food For Thought (feat. Igor Fil of Katalepsy)
3. We All Bleed Red


Carnal Decay are a brutal death metal band from Switzerland. They released their latest EP ‘When Push Comes To Shove’ on July 20th through Rising Nemesis Records and many other labels over the globe. Such include Nice to Eat You Records and Sevared Records. The album features three ultra heavy pieces with guest vocalist Igor Fil of ‘Katalepsy’ on the 2nd track. The band is for fans of Ingested, Dying Fetus and Gorgasm. They comment ‘our goal was getting more groove, more brutality and more catchiness into our songs than ever before. I can proudly say that we perfectly achieved that on When Push Comes To Shove!’

Perhaps ‘groove’ was a misleading word to use, as it suggests a more relaxed rhythmical nature. True, the band aren’t super-reliant on computers to make their sound mechanical and fake, but the musicians are still very tight. The music sure is brutal however, so that’s not really up for debate. There is heavier music out there though if that’s an issue for you. Rather than the group trying to outdo everyone else in chaos, they seem more concerned with creating a morbid sense of style, which is surely a good thing. Considering the various surprises found in the musical structures, the material is indeed ‘catchy’ in a metal way, and it’s impressive how it flows so logically.

However, this music is very everyday stuff. You get blast beats, semi-atonal riffs with tons of rising and falling chromatic ideas, tremolo picking, breakdowns, cookie monster vocals etc. Many bands are highly cliched but have at least something interesting about them, but Decay don’t really stand out amongst the crowd at all. The level of musicianship on offer is also pretty average. The bass work mainly copies the guitars, there are no flashy solos and the rhythms are relatively basic. (However, there are some cool drum fills to be heard).

In conclusion, this music is great for playing loud, moshing to and jumping up and down on your bed to. It’s not designed to be thought deeply about or appreciated on a music theory level. There’s nothing wrong with that, but at the same time there’s nothing to be excited about, either. If you really don’t care if no real melodies come from the instruments and certainly the vocals in your death metal, there isn’t much to be concerned about when considering buying the album. However, if you like your music to be more sophisticated and adventurous, you will likely be disappointed with it. Carnal Decay are no Behemoth or Nile.

Review by Simon Wiedemann