|Artwork by Josh Thieler from Slaves BC|
I've known about Slaves BC due to their heavy Twitter presence but that's as far as it went. Until now. All is Dust and I am Nothing will make even the most time-strapped of posers stand up and take notice. The concept album based on the Book of Ecclesiastes shows up as the first entry beside “vicious” in the dictionary. And viciousness is a virtue Slaves BC refuse to deny from beginning to end.
The opening salvo “God Has Turned His Back” wastes no time subjecting listeners to the aural tortures riddling the album. Caustic vocals berate as hammering guitars and harried drums raze the ground in a maelstrom of sludge and hardcore. That combination is a common theme but not the only one to surface.
Slower, more doom-ridden tempos pulverize while black metal runs swarm and distort. That sort of fervour courses through the album casting a misanthropic shadow over the prevailing savagery. As a testament to the overall intensity, even when Slaves BC prolong the agony they still drive hard exerting an inexorable pressure on the listener. Not oppressive so much as a stranglehold.
It's basically an all out assault. Steamrolling riffs methodically assert a death metal presence, feedback burns synapses, dissonance hides in the wreckage, and those unrestrained vocals leave absolutely nothing on the table.
Slaves BC move effortlessly from speedy hardcore derivatives into groovy sludge or blackened hybrids keeping the listener on their toes and looking over their shoulders. But that thrill of “anything goes” is what will keep the listener firmly defending the “Repeat All” button.
For such a complex company of genre styles, the battle plan is relatively simple; show no mercy and leave nothing but a path of destruction through heavy, infectious riffs and dark atmosphere. And anything you catch from this diseased album is going to be fucking nasty and incurable.
Prepare thy selves. Lace up your Doc Martin's, put an eternal scowl on your face, load up on painkillers and hide that sweatpants boner because it all boils down to one word: KILLER.