Nasty Surgeons – Infectious Stench (2018) REVIEW

Hard at work within the underground extreme metal scenes of Northern Spain for the last couple of decades the folks that congeal to form Nasty Surgeons lead with the simple goal of making extreme gore themed grind/death metal in the vein of Avulsed, Exhumed, and Carcass. Instead of closely resembling their masters the project’s second full-length ‘Infectious Stench’ drives a railroad spike of General Surgery and Impaled style gore, growls and riffs into the heart of their makers. It is a simple goal and an average undertaking that successfully retreads the complex, semi-melodic landscape created by middle-era Carcass releases and their progeny.

The rising conception of Nasty Surgeons came alongside the slow demise of long running melodic death metal band Mistweaver. Both projects were spearheaded by guitarist/vocalist Raúl Puente who is also a key member of death metal projects Mass Burial, Graveyard of Souls, and now ex-Mistweaver. Some great love for the classics of Swedish extreme metal leaks into all of his projects and although ‘Infectious Stench’ is no exception the focus is more on the brutal intersection between old school death metal and grindcore. Joined by members of his former/current bands, as well as a bassist/vocalist from an early incarnation of Internal SufferingPuente brings fluid crawling riffs clearly meant to inhabit a space between ‘Necroticism: Descanting the Insalubrious’ and the groaning blood-puking of ‘Slaughtercult’. The album doesn’t insist on being anything more or less and hits a nice standard throughout.

A fair amount of punkish Swedish death metal a la Mordbrand or Cut Up fills in the gaps between grinding and semi-melodic outbursts but doesn’t touch upon the refinements of Mass Burial. Though it isn’t as angular or abruptly savage as their source material I find ‘Infectious Stench’ an entertaining listen when primarily focused on the guitar work. The early rub of any great metal album relies heavily on riffs and guitar performance and in this sense Nasty Surgeons are more than up to par, but they’re not doing anything nuclear or earth shattering in terms of arrangements. You could more or less whip out any early Haemorrhage or Exhumed record and get approximately the same result. This is either a complete success or a middling result depending on your expectations, I believe with consideration for the project’s goals this is a great success.

Although it might seem like a reductive analysis, ‘Infectious Stench’ is a perfect strike upon Nasty Surgeons‘ goal of making throwback gore metal that is as heavy as it is intricate. They’ve dropped some of the melodic ideas that helped their previous album ‘Exhumation Requiem’ (2017) stand out but filled in that ideological space with more variety and further refined guitar work. Highly recommended to gore metal nostalgics and Carcass fiddlers alike.

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Artist Nasty Surgeons
Type Album
Released July 5, 2018
BUY/LISTEN on Xtreem Music’s Bandcamp! Follow Nasty Surgeons on Facebook
Genre Grindcore,
Death Metal

Infectious, it penetrates. 3.5/5.0

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