Despite their name, there is not a lot of love to be found on Unyielding Love‘s debut EP The Sweat of Augury. Instead expect to find intense noisy, technical grindcore complete with unpredictable twists and turns, and abstract, despondent lyrics. If that is the listener’s definition of “love” then they are in for a treat. The Belfast-based act’s tunes could be likened to material by As the Sun Sets, Premonitions of War, The Sawtooth Grin, and Converge if Converge were sliced, diced and rearranged into malformed shapes. But even those comparisons will not fully prepare anyone for the auditory bombardment they will be subjected to. The only thing “unyielding” about this project is its heaviness and pervasive darkness.
It may be only 20 minutes in length, but The Sweat of Augury is intense every step of the way. “Abandon the Body” opens up the release with a swell of cacophonous feedback that births a barrage of churning, dissonant grind riffs and pummeling blast beats that aim to disembowel those who dare to listen. To top off this maelstrom of grotesqueness, high-pitched, acidic shrieks and hoarse growls fight for dominance in a chaotic vocal battle that makes the music more heart-stopping.
“Fleeting Joy” stampedes in shortly after with a back-and-forth assault of slamming metallic hardcore riffs and buzzsaw, angular grind. This auditory tug-of-war eventually explodes into a feedback-laden section of chugging, skull-crushing beatdowns that keep the pain coming until the end. “Cruor Whelm” offers 49-seconds bludgeoning, misshapen riffs and straight-forward metallic hardcore crunch, before bleeding into the piercing harsh noise interlude, “Die Hand Die Verletzt. Die Hand Die Erträgt”. From there the Irish noise makers deal out the one-two punch of “Ardent Shroud” and “Of Human Grease and Ash”. “Ardent Shroud” weaves together serpentine death metal riffs with a caustic blend of dismal riff salad and early, dissonant metalcore chugging if were fed through a shredder. “Of Human Grease and Ash” begins with yet another abrasive murk of abnormal guitars and hellacious drumming, before shifting into a lengthy wall of noise and back again. The track ends with the sparse, opening chords of penultimate track “The Pregnant Hurt”; one of the album’s best cuts.
“The Pregnant Hurt” begins with a slow-burning section of raw, melancholic guitars that somberly march and gradually gain in speed. Eventually the track opens up into a climax of dissonant, corrosive black metal that sounds like being trapped in a cataclysmic storm hellbent on wiping out everything in its path. The track’s concluding feedback dirge flows directly into the opening moments of closing track, “Sweated Augury”. The first two-minutes of the track are comprised of sporadic, bellowing doom, leviathanic bass lines and dissonant shrieks, all of which are housed in a thick cloud of noise. Then the track conjures a thick, sludgy riff that feverishly shifts from angular grooves to atonal, tremolo-picked assaults that sound like the listener is being trapped in a swarm of hell-spawned insects. This cacophonous splendor slowly builds in intensity before bringing the album to a close with a suffocating miasma of noise, much like how the album began.
Unyielding Love have crafted an unrelenting, nightmarish sonic beast that sinks its fangs into listeners and refuses to let ago until they are nothing but blood and bone. The Sweat of Augury weaves together blackened malevolence with feral ferocity into a 20-minute blitzkrieg of riffs and aural abnormalities that would prove to be fatal for those with heart conditions if it were a second longer. Though it swims in a sea of other grind releases that have been put out this year, it must not be overlooked. Those looking to get eviscerated by some abysmal tunes will not need to look much further.
Release Date: September 30, 2016
Label: Independent/Sentient Ruin (cassette)
Favorite Tracks: “Of Human Grease and Ash”, “The Pregnant Hurt” and “Sweated Augury”
For Fans Of: As the Sun Sets, Cloacal Kiss, Converge, Idylls, Premonitions of War and Maruta